“I saw how much stress and hard work she and her colleagues went through, and you know, I thought it was a way for us to show return and support,” he told CNN.
He only expected his friends to see it, but the group has grown to more than 12,000 members in three weeks and hundreds of health workers have been adopted.
“We lost the number when we hit a thousand,” Tandorand said.
To participate, nurses and other health workers can post some information about themselves and a link to their Amazon wishlist.
“If you read a lot of Amazon links, they want compression socks or a new pair of shoes or a coffee mug, candy,” he said. “Little things that keep their spirits bright when they come home from work at the end of the day.”
These gifts come from grateful members of the public, physicians, and other nurses who adopt entire hospital units.
He said he had heard from many who had made new friends through the group.
“It’s not just a gift page anymore. It’s something that has received support from their peers,” he said.
It was only in October, Tandorand said, that her husband and his daughter all had Govt-19. They work well and never need to be hospitalized, but it gave her a first understanding of what health care workers are dealing with.
He says he runs the team four hours a day and hires three of his friends to help.
One of her new volunteers was a wellness nurse and one of the first people to be accepted by the team.
He told KETV that he was adopting other nurses to pay for it.
“I deal with death all the time,” Eps-Martinez said. “These other nurses are not used to it. It’s hard for them. They deal with death, but it’s not like that.”
Tandorand had planned to run the group for only a few weeks, but says it would not be appropriate to suspend it now as the number of cases is increasing.
“We go to work day and night with these people, they’m tired, they leave work with tears in their eyes,” Tandorand said. “This is when they all need our support more than ever.”