Hospital workers across the U.S. present sharply different pictures of their preparedness for the coronavirus

first_img U.S. hospitals are bracing for an onslaught of patients sickened by the new coronavirus, shoring up supplies, refining crisis plans, and putting on a brave face. But there’s another narrative at play: Many health workers feel left in the lurch.STAT heard in recent days from dozens of frontline hospital employees, and depending on where they worked, they presented sharply different pictures of preparedness. There are those who believe their health systems are equipped to weather the coming storm. Others are less sure.“For the hospitals, it depends on who is in charge — what camp your leadership is in,” an anesthesiologist on the East Coast, speaking on the condition of anonymity, told STAT. “There’s been the ‘just the flu’ contingent, and everyone else.”advertisement If Covid-19 gets bad, triage will be needed. Are we ready for that? @megkesh Related: Meghana Keshavan Some hospitals have engineered new protocols to triage ill patients — turning to tools like hotlines and telemedicine to advise those with mild illness on how to manage their symptoms. They have devised backup plans should intensive care units become overrun, including stopping elective surgeries and preparing to expand critical care into operating rooms.But others are lagging.Despite assurances from their hospitals’ leadership, many frontline workers are worried about emergency departments overrun, and too few life-support devices to go around. They’re afraid of protective supplies running low and of contracting the virus themselves — and passing it along to their loved ones. In China, 3,300 health workers were sickened by the virus, and 13 died.Reports from the Seattle area, the epicenter of the U.S. outbreak, indicate that some of the city’s hospitals are nearly overwhelmed. One hospital’s note to staff, shared with New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof, says the “local COVID-19 trajectory is likely to be similar to that of Northern Italy.” The hospital is down to a four-day supply of gloves.“Our health care staff has been taking our N95 masks, because people are scared for their families,” said a resident physician in Philadelphia, one of the dozens of people who responded to STAT’s callout for health workers’ stories. “I’m worried about my parents, too.” Leave this field empty if you’re human: Hospital employees have uniformly been kept abreast of Covid-19 preparations through emails and web-based training modules. But there has been little in the way of in-person training on protocols for dealing with a virulent contagion. Although many first responders have been schooled in dealing with highly infectious diseases, other hospital employees are left wondering if they’ll be safe.“This is unlike any other outbreak I’ve been involved with,” said Rainee Sinroll, a nurse in Missouri who worked through the H1N1 epidemic and has spoken extensively with other health workers in her region. “There’s absolutely no training and information to the staff that will be involved. And no message to the community that would lower cases, thereby allowing better care in our facilities.”A surgical tech in New Mexico is expecting to see Covid-19 patients coming into her hospital, since the first cases were discovered in the state just a few days ago. But she’s deeply unhappy with the guidance from her hospital to date.“Some of my colleagues and I feel let down,” said Alyssa Estrada, an instrument sterilization technician who says her hospital is already short-staffed. “If something happens, how are we going to keep our department running if we don’t have the manpower?”There may be enough masks and gowns at her hospital, she said, but she’s already having difficulty getting sterilization equipment. Sanitation wipes, and sprays that get rid of biofilms — that is, slimy amalgamations of pathogens that reside on equipment — are in short supply.“It’s kind of strange, because I feel like the city has been warning us more than the actual hospital has,” she said. “In the end, we’re all going to have to work together if this gets serious — and I feel like we all need to be more up-to-date on the information.” By Meghana Keshavan March 14, 2020 Reprints Privacy Policy HospitalsHospital workers across the U.S. present sharply different pictures of their preparedness for the coronavirus A certified nurse assistant in Alabama said that she, too, has been recently ill with a virus — and hasn’t had access to testing, despite working with a vulnerable population. The situation has been “very confusing, arbitrary, chaotic!” she said.“No one among the CNA staff is talking about this in any meaningful way,” she said. “If the nurses are, I don’t know about it.”In her hospital in Florida, Adirim has seen a disconnect in the attitudes of health workers glued to the news and others who have adopted a wait-and-watch outlook.“I still hear other doctors in the hallways, saying this is just like the flu,” the East Coast anesthesiologist said. “Not everyone has been taking this as seriously as they should.”Last month, she used her own money to buy goggles for herself and her husband — to protect against the virus, should it go airborne when patients are put on ventilators.“If we hadn’t bought those goggles, we wouldn’t have anything,” she said.In China and Italy, as health workers fell ill with Covid-19, health professionals from other specialties were trained to replace them. That very well might happen in the U.S., Adirim said.When working with the Department of Homeland Security on prior epidemics, such as H1N1, Adirim’s team considered the possibility of health worker burnout or attrition — whether, under the threat of exhaustion or illness, employees would stop showing up at work.But that hasn’t happened in Italy, or in China, nor during prior epidemics. The jury’s still out on the U.S. response, Adirim said, but she thinks that health workers will rise to the occasion and work tirelessly to combat the pandemic.“I think those of us who go into health care fields understand that risk,” Adirim said. Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City has kicked off a telemedicine program, as have several other hospitals around the country. Like Stanford, the Manhattan health system has detailed triage plans — with tools to divert milder cases and bring the critical patients in for intensive care.“I think we’re prepared,” said Jolion McGreevy, medical director of the Mount Sinai Hospital emergency department. “We have the resources, and it’s all being coordinated by a system command center that has high leadership.”Large hospitals in many cities compete for patients, but the three major health systems in the Cleveland area — University Hospitals, Cleveland Clinic, and MetroHealth are absorbing the lessons taught by hard-hit cities like Wuhan in China and Bergamo in Italy.“We have a trifecta approach in the city of Cleveland to mobilize joint resources for ambulatory care, mirroring what we’re seeing in other cities abroad,” said Robert Hughes, associate medical director of the department of emergency medicine at University Hospitals. “I’ve found that the collaborative spirit between the health systems in our city has been better for the community we serve.”The fallout from the national dearth of Covid-19 testing kits looms, as well. Health workers who have fallen ill worry whether they have a cold, the flu, or the novel coronavirus — and most have no way of knowing the truth.An East Coast emergency room physician who wished to remain anonymous has been ill for several weeks — with symptoms that appear, in her professional opinion, to be consistent with Covid-19. Although confirmed negative for the flu and other respiratory viral illnesses, the physician was denied coronavirus testing because there was no confirmed exposure to another patient ill with the disease.“I’ve missed several weeks of work, unpaid, to avoid putting patients at risk,” the physician said. “I’m frustrated that I still can’t get tested to ensure I am safe to return to work.” Related: Newsletters Sign up for Daily Recap A roundup of STAT’s top stories of the day. Terry Adirim, a trained pediatric emergency physician who helps lead clinical care at Florida Atlantic University College of Medicine, agreed that there is “variability in preparedness” that has to do with hospital leadership. But the former senior Department of Defense and Homeland Security official added, “I think that comes because federal guidances haven’t been as strong as they could be.”We want to hear from you: Are you a health care worker affected by the coronavirus outbreak? Please tell us about your experience.Delays in rolling out coronavirus tests mean it’s impossible to know how many people are infected, and how bad the epidemic will get. Knowing what to be ready for is difficult in these circumstances, and the level of preparedness appears to vary from state to state, city to city, hospital to hospital — and from individual to individual.advertisement Medical workers at the Kaiser Permanente French Campus test a patient for the novel coronavirus at a drive-through testing facility in San Francisco on Thursday. JOSH EDELSON/AFP via Getty Images Related: [email protected] Patients hospitalized with Covid-19 typically have pneumonia and difficulty breathing, which would require treatment with oxygen or, in severe cases, intubation and being hooked up to a ventilator. Physicians see these cases on a regular basis, but treating them in droves could overwhelm a hospital’s capacity.“I’m concerned we won’t have enough epinephrine or albuterol — these are the bread and butter meds we use every day for pneumonias,” a pediatric ICU doctor in Chicago said.The news reports from China, Iran, and Italy in particular has been sobering. Health workers in some places in Italy have had to choose which patient gets ventilator care, and which patient will not, according to reports from physicians there.Many hospitals in the U.S. are already operating at high capacity. There are 45,000 ICU hospital beds and 160,000 ventilators nationwide — but, in the event of a moderate outbreak, about 200,000 Americans would need such intensive care. And that leaves out all the patients who might need lifesaving procedures, equipment, and medications for reasons other than coronavirus.“It’s frightening, because for me as a doctor, I realize there is going to be a certain point where we’ll be forced to make decisions we’re not comfortable making,” the resident physician in Philadelphia said.Though she’s received plenty of training in how to treat patients sickened by severe pneumonia, she said her medical education hasn’t involved making these heart-wrenching triage decisions.“We’ve been so blessed by an excess of resources that we’ve never had to withdraw care from someone’s loved one because we need their ventilator for someone else,” she said. “But I’m scared of that happening.”Many health systems say they are confident in their ability to tackle a surge of novel coronavirus cases.Stanford University’s health system, for instance, has “redefined its triage process,” according to Sam Shen, a clinical associate professor of emergency medicine. It has set up a drive-through clinic for ill patients, in operation since Monday, that’s meant to test for coronavirus once tests are readily available. Severely ill patients will be directed immediately to negative-pressure rooms.The university is also setting up tents in front of the emergency department entrance, to create an isolation space so patients with possible Covid-19 infections don’t need to enter the ER. President Trump just declared the coronavirus pandemic a national emergency. Here’s what that means Please enter a valid email address. What does the coronavirus mean for the U.S. health care system? Some simple math offers alarming answers About the Author Reprints Biotech Correspondent Meghana covers biotech and contributes to The Readout newsletter. Tags Coronavirushospitalsinfectious diseasepublic healthlast_img read more

Systematech, founders to face OSC hearing

Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Related news The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) has brought allegations of unregistered trading and illegal distribution against a company, and its two founders, which were cease traded late last year. The OSC said it will hold a hearing, starting on Dec. 11, to hear allegations against Systematech Solutions Inc., its president, April Vuong and its managing director, Hao Quach. The commission charges that Systematech, Vuong and Quach raised at least $12.4 million from investors between March 2007 and October 2011 and issued promissory notes in exchange for these investments. It says investors were promised an annual return of between 12% and 30% and told that their investments were not at risk. James Langton Share this article and your comments with peers on social media Compensation funds available for Phoenix group victims Former Alberta planner fined, banned for illegal distribution scheme However, the commission says that, of the $12.4 million raised from investors, $7.7 million was repaid to investors, $3.5 million was lost in trading accounts, and $900,000 was paid for personal type payments. As a result, it is alleging that they traded without registration and violated prospectus requirements and, “… engaged in a course of conduct that they knew or reasonably ought to have known would result in a fraud…” None of the allegations have been proven. The OSC issued a temporary cease trade order against the three respondents back in December 2011. The new hearing will consider whether to extend the temporary order, and whether any other sanctions may be warranted. BCSC sanctions founders, companies in failed insurance venture Keywords Illegal distributionsCompanies Ontario Securities Commission read more

Polar teams up with i-tri, triathlon training program for middle school…

first_img Related Polar has announced a strategic partnership with i-tri, a community-based program ‘fostering personal empowerment through triathlon training for middle-school girls.’Through this partnership, i-tri girls will train with Polar heart rate monitors to incorporate the technology component of STEM learning into their curriculum. Polar adds that the data-based training will educate girls on the physics and biology of their bodies during exercise while providing real-time, personal data to continue training motivation and boost self-esteem.As a part of i-tri’s integrated STEM-based curriculum, The Science of Triathlon, the girls will also be part of a study to determine the effects of technology on their training process.“Polar’s partnership with i-tri is a major step in empowering adolescent girls to be active and understanding from a young age how real-time data is a reflection of what goes on inside our bodies,” said Tom Fowler, President of Polar US.“We believe that data is a major motivating factor for athletes of all ages, and we look forward to further promoting that inspiration and providing resources to help. Introducing an active lifestyle early is key for encouraging healthy habits throughout adulthood, and we support i-tri’s mission of personal empowerment through sports, science and education.”Since its formation in 2010, i-tri has reported educational gains, specifically in science, from girls who were in the program. With the Polar partnership, girls can take their learning a step further by analyzing their own data. By giving girls a goal of completing a triathlon, i-tri notes that it is also boosting confidence by giving them the physical and mental tools to achieve that goal.“Because of their long-standing history of accuracy, Polar was the clear choice when we decided to partner with a sports technology company,” said i-tri Founder and Executive Director, Theresa Roden.“After training for and completing my first triathlon in my thirties, I saw more than just a physical transformation – I saw the way it positively affected me from an emotional and self-esteem standpoint, and I wanted to create a community to foster those same goals for girls in their formative years.“We are confident that the technologies Polar offers will help do exactly that while also helping to create the next generation of engineers and scientists in the process.” read more

Code for litigation funding ‘toothless’, says critic

first_imgThe growth of alternative business structures has accelerated the need for statutory regulation of third-party litigation funding, a business lobbyist claimed today.Mary Terzino, from the US Chamber Institute for Legal Reform, said conflicts of interest were ‘inherent’ if law firms and funders had shared ownership under an ABS.Terzino said the need was now greater than ever to ditch the voluntary code set up in 2011 and protect clients whose cases are funded by third parties.She said the industry was now worth £1bn worldwide but the UK and US had little statutory power to safeguard clients. ‘There are 25 funding companies in England and Wales but the Association of Litigation Funders [which adheres to the voluntary code] has only nine members,’ said Terzino, who was speaking at today’s Westminster Legal Policy Forum.‘The voluntary code of conduct carries a lot of important safeguards but the only penalty for a breach is to be removed from the ALF – it is completely toothless for those who are not members.’She added: ‘There remains a real potential for conflicts of interest, most significantly in England and Wales with looser rules about who can own law firms.’Terzino was accused by audience member Michael Napier, chairman of Harbour Litigation Funding, of opposing third-party funding because it helped clients sue members of her organisation.Leslie Perrin, chairman of the Association of Litigation Funders, said judges would act if cases are being run badly on purpose, and it was ‘implausible to say regulation will do any better than self-interest does’.In his earlier address, Perrin said he saw ‘no prospect’ of statutory regulation and that the voluntary code was working. ‘It is extraordinary to think that a government would want to regulate purely commercial arrangements between purely commercial entities. I’m pretty bullish about the survival of voluntary regulation.’Professor Rachael Mulheron, a member of the Civil Justice Council which drew up the code in 2011, said ‘nothing has changed’ since that time to necessitate reform.last_img read more

Tarragona bypass contracts

first_imgSPAIN: The Ministry of Development has awarded contracts totalling €205m for a connection between the Valencia – Barcelona route and the Madrid – Barcelona high speed line, replacing single track through built-up areas between Vandellós and Tarragona.A joint venture of FCC Construcción, Copasa and Coalvi has been awarded a tracklaying contract worth €1298m. The route will be 1668 mm gauge as far as a gauge-changing facility near a new Tarragona Central station, with a 2·3 km spur to the existing Reus – Tarragona route. Electrification is to be undertaken by Cobra, Elecnor and SEMI for €548m. Four substations will be required for the 1668 mm gauge line electrified at 3 kV DC, while the standard gauge section has been designed for 25 kV. Azvi and Copisa will build a €204m station at Cambrils on a viaduct 126 m across, widening to 28 m in the station area to accommodate two platforms.last_img read more

Official funeral for former House of Assembly speaker

first_img Share Share Sharing is caring! LocalNews Official funeral for former House of Assembly speaker by: – March 22, 2013 14 Views   no discussionscenter_img Share Former Speaker, Ossie Symes. Photo credit: The Sun NewspaperFormer speaker of the House of Assembly, Ossie Symes will be afforded an official funeral on Monday, March 25th at the St. Alphonsus Catholic Church in Goodwill.Mr. Symes, 75, died of heart complications at the Princess Margaret Hospital on March 12th.The Dominica Government has declared a day of mourning and all flags are to be flown at half-staff on all public buildings on Monday. The official funeral service will commence at 3pm and viewing of the body will be from 2:45pm.Official mourners include the President, the Prime Minister, Speaker of the House of Assembly and members of Parliament.Mr. Symes served as speaker, between 1995 and 2000 and also held several positions in the public service. He was accountant general, director of audit, permanent secretary in various ministries and chief establishment officer.He also served as secretary to the Public Service Commission and was chairman of the Job Classification Appeals Committee; he was an active member of the former Civil Service Association. In 2007 he was nominated by the Union and accepted to serve as a member of the Public Service Commission. He was also recognized by the Union in 2010.Dominica Vibes News Tweetlast_img read more

“Zero” – Former Tottenham Hotspur star believes Man United have no…

first_imgThe Premier League side face an uphill task getting to the quarter finals of the competition following their 2-0 home loss to PSG last night.Dagbladet have reported on comments Thorstvedt made in the aftermath of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s first loss as Manchester United boss: “There was a class difference. They were sometimes outplayed by PSG.”Asked if the English club could go through the Norwegian said: “Zero.”Embed from Getty ImagesWith Paul Pogba ruled out of the second leg in Paris due to his sending off, and injury concerns for  Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard, it’s no wonder the former Tottenham man thinks Manchester United will struggle to get past PSG.Solskjaer’s side were still in the game before the injuries to Martial and Lingard and the introduction of Alexis Sanchez and Juan Mata made a big difference.The pair now face a race against time to make the next leg in three week’s time.NDby Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksTrending TodayForge of Empires – Free Online GameChallenge Your Brain With This Must-Play Strategy Game. No Install.Forge of Empires – Free Online GameUndoRaid: Shadow Legends | Free DownloadEven Non-Gamers Are Obsessed With This RPG Game (It’s Worth Installing!)Raid: Shadow Legends | Free DownloadUndoDating.comWhere do attractive singles find each other in Tung Chung?Dating.comUndoPerfect-Dating.comReveal Tung Chung As The Best City to Date for Love & RomancePerfect-Dating.comUndoKeto减肥1個簡單的妙招一夜「融化」腹部贅肉(今晚試試)Keto减肥UndoCNBC InternationalHere’s How Big Businesses in Singapore Are Managing the Impact of COVID-19.CNBC InternationalUndo熱門話題小心會長過頭…網友推爆:「真的長得超誇張!」熱門話題UndoSingles50Hong Kong: A 40+ Dating Site That Actually Works!Singles50UndoCoworking Space | Search AdsThe cost of shared office in Hong Kong might surprise youCoworking Space | Search AdsUndo Former Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper Erik Thorstvedt has told the Norwegian media Manchester United have no chance of making it to the next round of the Champions League.last_img read more