How Deloitte provided travel for medical professionals in California by donating Southwest Airlines ticket balances
Deloitte is the largest professional services network in the world by revenue and number of professionals, and one of the “Big Four” accounting organizations. In response to the current COVID-19 crisis, the firm donates unused ticket balances on Southwest Airlines to Californian health workers, as announced via a press release on their website the 5th of May 2020.
The ticket balances are donated to the University of California´s academic health systems to support medical professionals traveling to treat COVID-19 patients within the state of California. By joining forces with Southwest Airlines, Deloitte´s donation aiming to help in the reduction of travel costs that medical professionals have to face when flying to and from the six University of California health systems in the state. University of California Health is one of the nation´s largest academic health systems, providing care to more than 375,000 people through its emergency departments, admitting more than 172,000 people for inpatient care, and providing more than 7.6 million outpatient visits each year.
Michele Parmelee, Deloitte Global Chief People and Purpose Officer, states that “the COVID-19 pandemic has severely strained health and hospital systems around the world.” He adds that “One way for Deloitte to make an impact that matters in this crisis is to help connect medical professionals to the communities with the greatest needs. Working with Southwest Airlines, we have developed a creative solution that allows us to donate Deloitte’s unused ticket balances to fund the travel of medical professionals to the frontlines of this fight.”
Kevin Sullivan, Senior Director of Southwest Business, comments that “in times like now, it’s wonderful to see one of our top corporate partners provide critical travel support to organizations fighting on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic.” And adds that “Southwest remains committed to putting its Hearts in action by helping those serving on the front line and partnering with organizations to ensure medical personnel are able to reach areas where they are needed the most.”
Deloitte is headquartered in London, United Kingdom, but has offices in more than 150 countries and territories worldwide. Therefore, the firm is one of the largest travel buyers on a global level. As a result, Deloitte is able to donate an approximate amount of US$1 million unused ticket balances across multiple airlines. These ticket balances will be used to support frontline workers traveling to COVID-19 hotspots, as well as to facilitate the transportation of personal protective equipment, and medical supplies to areas where they are urgently needed.
Deloitte´s COVID-19 response puts the focus on making an impact through direct donations to organizations that are currently fighting against the pandemic. They are collaborating with clients and suppliers on innovative medical solutions, supporting non-profit and community partners in need, rolling out expanding employee giving programs, as well as supporting government response efforts.