OUR FINEST HOUR
As I drove into the parking lot, I couldn’t help notice the lack of cars. Thanks to the SARS CoV2 virus, hunkering down is now the new normal. Yet through it all, physicians are answering the call, adapting as only they can to the fluid situation. This is not without a cost. As in Italy, the healthcare workers casualties are mounting all too quickly. What hasn’t been emphasized enough is that those professionals are, much like the elderly and the immune-compromised, a very high risk group for serious complications. And yet, as the FDNY and NYPD on September 11, your physicians, nurses and others are running to the fire while others are running away. Just the other day, one thousand retired medical personnel volunteered to back up beleaguered doctors and nurses on the front lines.
There’s a serious problem however. We are all short of Personal Protective Equipment. We need this yesterday. Doctors seeing seriously ill patients without adequate protection and supplies is akin to firemen attempting to fight fire without hoses and water. And still, your doctors and nurses are hitting the ground running every day. This indomitable spirit should be an example to us all.
So when you see a doctor or nurse, give them a hearty Thank You – an air high five or corona forearm bump will do. NY’s Healthcare Team is fighting the good fight for us all. In the words of Winston Churchill, “Never have so many owed so much to so few.”
Arthur Fougner, MD is President of the Medical Society of the State of New York. He is an attending OB-GYN at North Shore University Hospital, Long Island Jewish Medical Center and Forest Hills Hospital. Dr. Fougner is also an assistant professor of OB-GYN at the Hofstra North Shore- LIJ School of Medicine at Hofstra University