DANVILLE, MONTOUR COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A Montour County Hospital System has a creative way of helping employees de-stress. It’s a new program they hope to bring back on a regular basis during the warmer months.

For a couple of hours, the staff at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville can escape the worries of work and play with a pet.

As we were brainstorming, one of the most positive things that the staff responded to us about that they really appreciated was our therapy dogs who we had prior to the pandemic would come in for the patients. But they were like we got to pet them too when they were here.

So they partnered with the PSPCA of Danville to throw their first-ever ‘Animal Shelter Day.’

“Any time that we can get the animals out, get them exposed, and then also help staff members. I mean Geisinger does so much for the community it’s sort of a win-win situation,” said Kristen Szwast, Site Director of PSPCA Danville Center.

Larissa Fetterhoff, an EKG tech at the hospital says she’s already feeling relaxed.

“I’m very, very less stressed,” said Larissa Fetterhoff, EKG Technician.

The pandemic created a lot of mental health problems for people and Fetterhoff believes events like this help bring you back to earth.

“Having something to take our mind off of that and kind of decompress and just forget about all that stuff for a couple of moments I think is very, very important,” Fetterhoff added.

The turnout was such a success, that Geisinger hopes to make this a regular event.

“Plans now are to continue this, this year and look at starting earlier next year because we can start in the springtime and go all the way through the fall,” said James Gould, Operations Manager Med Surgeon Patient Unit.

All of the furry friends at the PSPCA event are all available for adoption.