“In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.” This anonymous quote — which some have attributed to Albert Einstein — sums up one lesson from the pandemic.

Looking back 3 1/2 years after the early days of COVID-19, we can better appreciate how the pandemic’s extraordinarily difficult days also created an opportunity to reimagine and rebuild health and health care in our communities, working collaboratively to ensure everyone receives the care they need and deserve.

The AHA’s Living Learning Network was formed in 2020 during the pandemic to bring together health care leaders to discuss real-time challenges, share strategies, expand perspectives and problem-solve together. Supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, this virtual community now has nearly 800 members across 50 states and Puerto Rico.

Virtual learning events hosted by the LLN have included a focus on nursing challenges and solutions, infection prevention and control protocols in emergency departments, and hospital-community partnerships to prepare for future public health emergencies. You can learn more and join this vibrant community by visiting AHA.org.

The AHA LLN recently released “Rebuilding Health: Hospitals, Health Systems and Public Health Working for a Better Tomorrow,” the third in a series of look books that highlight stories of hospitals and health systems in vivid images and text.

This resource illustrates health care teams’ dedication and work in improving and innovating to make care more seamless, safe, equitable, patient centered and empowering. Images and quotes highlight the field’s efforts and achievements in preventing infections, engaging patients and families, working collaboratively with community partners, ensuring a strong workforce, integrating new processes and more.

In a letter that opens this look book, Chris DeRienzo, M.D., AHA’s senior vice president and chief physician executive, says, “Amid exhaustion and countless questions, let us never lose sight of our unwavering shared purpose to build a stronger, healthier future for all.”

Let’s continue to meet the challenges and opportunities in health care with the dedication, determination and skill that drives improvement and innovation — and ultimately benefits our patients, their families and our communities.

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