Trials and Triumphs: Finding hope during COVID-19
As the world steps back, healthcare professionals from around the globe are going above and beyond to serve those in need during this COVID-19 crisis. Dr. Kristofer Smith, naviHealth’s President of Home-Based Medical Care, is one of these dedicated workers, tirelessly answering the call to volunteer for the cause despite not practicing acute care medicine in over a decade. These are his daily stories – uncut and untouched, as told from the front lines.
Day 3 – Cross discipline collegiality
Siloes are one of the more surprising and often disappointing discoveries of working in health care. In normal times, too often different disciplines fail to come together as one team. Doctors from different disciplines look down on those in other fields, nurses and nurse practitioners (NPs) often have fraught working relationships and ambulatory practices and hospital priorities often clash.
But in a crisis, we see a return to the most basic desire in all clinicians – the desire to help.
As we have taken on more patients in this new COVID unit, spirits remain high. Providers across all disciplines help with the tasks at hand. NPs can be seen helping to clean soiled clothing and linens, doctors are feeding patients their lunches, physical therapists set up calls with patients, nurses are helping the environmental services staff keep the place clean.
Volunteers continue to show up as well. One day, an orthopedist who usually used the space for ambulatory surgery, offered his services. Then, it was a neurologist, then it was an idle ambulatory internist. They all want to help, if their services are needed.
Meanwhile the census grows, first six, then 11, then 17 until we hit a steady state of 22 patients on an average daily census. The morale is good as the staff see the team coalesce. While we are all still a bit uncomfortable as the work is not our usual and some of the processes need to be smoothed out, the patients are doing well and we feel the satisfaction of doing our part.
Catch up on the entire series of “Trials and Triumphs” featuring Dr. Kristofer Smith.