How-To Support Healthcare's Front Line (Written For Philanthropists & Healthcare Executives)
Updated: Mar 26, 2020
In this post, we address how YOU can help. But first, why? Not only is it wrong to send clinicians to the frontline without PPE protection, thereby putting them, their families, and previously uninfected patients at risk; they can also be sidelined when they become ill like 10% of Italy's doctors have been. We can all work together to mitigate the gaps whether we act as a donor or in your role as a hospital executive, or both.
David Koh — who has served as an occupational health consultant for the World Health Organization (WHO) published his analysis as an editorial in the journal Occupational Medicine. Among 138 patients who received treatment in a Wuhan hospital, 40 patients — or 29% — were healthcare workers, notes Prof. Koh. It is therefore urgent that we protect our frontline healthcare workforce NOW.
What You Can Do For Clinicians, Hospitals, and If You Lead a Health System
Gift Personal Protective Equipment, PPE:
The sites that still have some Personal Protective Equipment, PPE left are linked in yesterday's blog. You could purchase PPE items as gifts and enter the physician or nurse’s address as the gift address. If you urge them to buy their own PPE, they might need your help navigating online shopping, even relatively young physicians. Consider spending a few minutes helping them; offer because they will often not want to impose or ask for your help navigating web properties.
Alternatively, if you want to support those clinicians taking care of the highest number of most vulnerable patients regionally, if you live in Silicon Valley donate to the County system here: https://vmcfoundation.org/covid19/
Below is a nice snapshot of what's needed nationwide.
image credit: Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts (affiliated with Harvard)
Here are precise instructions to help the hospital nearest you:
Drive Rapid Cycle Adaptations: What's My Next Step As a Healthcare Executive?
As a healthcare system, this article has good adaptations to low system supply levels; One caveat we disagree with in this article is that unlike Singapore, we in hotspots like the Bay Area, Seattle, and NY are way too far along for widespread effective testing-based containment. This is when a state conducts targeted isolation and quarantine amongst the general population which tests positive to "curb the curve". This is why NYC has stopped all non hospitalized testing.
Specifically when there's a gap in your supply levels, this article written by a longtime physician leader, Dr. Atul Gawande suggests doing the following; this helped Singapore and Hong Kong successfully mitigate their outbreaks.
All health-care workers are expected to wear regular surgical masks for all patient interactions.
Use gloves and proper hand hygiene.
Disinfect all surfaces in between patient consults.
Patients with suspicious symptoms (a low-grade fever coupled with a cough, respiratory complaints, fatigue, or muscle aches) or exposures (travel to places with viral spread or contact with someone who tested positive) are separated from the rest of the patient population, and treated—wherever possible—in separate respiratory wards and clinics, in separate locations, with separate teams.
Social distancing is practiced within clinics and hospitals: waiting-room chairs are placed six feet apart; direct interactions among staff members are conducted at a distance; doctors and patients stay six feet apart except during examinations.
Eighty-five per cent of the workers used only surgical masks. Yet, owing to proper hand hygiene, none became infected." -- https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/keeping-the-coronavirus-from-infecting-health-care-workers
No matter who you are, you can make a difference. Do it NOW. Don't wait, thereby risking that which is worth waiting for --our cherished family, friends and colleagues both today and of the future.
For hospitals or health systems without logistics, infrastructure, and campaign resources to support donations, you may try this resource as a potential source for the following items.
Sherri Douville CEO & Board Member at Medigram, Inc. Prior to her current work in the mobile privacy, security, health IT and AI industry, Sherri worked in the medical device industry consulting on the areas of physician acceptance and economic feasibility of medical devices. Prior to that, Sherri worked in Field Marketing, Sales and as a National Sales Trainer for over a decade in over a dozen disease states; including with a variety of products indicated for respiratory infections. During that time, she leveraged her multi-disciplinary STEM background to help physicians understand the microbiology behind the sensitivity and effectiveness of specific and different pathogens to a range of anti-infective agents.
Dr. Art Douville, CMO at Medigram and Attending Neurologist. In addition to practicing Neurology, Dr. Art Douville has held several leadership and administrative positions in healthcare including helping physicians understand and leverage the data by which they're measured. He also has experience as a hospital Chief Medical Officer for two separate health systems. He oversaw both infection control and biohazard governance in hospital environments. Dr. Douville has expertise in clinical integration and was recently Regional Vice President/ Chief Medical Officer at Verity Health System. In this position, Dr. Douville oversaw physician relations, patient safety & quality, regulatory compliance, and the development of innovative clinical programs. He was part of the leadership team to spearhead bundled payment and Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) initiatives. Dr. Douville has over a decade of experience leading physician culture and developing leadership, performance improvement, regulatory compliance, clinical process design and implementation, as well as physician alignment.