Notes from the Front Lines of Covid-19 in a New York City Hospital – Part 3
Another Day from a Doctor’s Perspective
(Note: Dr. Pfau’s son is a physician working in a Brooklyn, NY hospital. These are excerpts from his texts).
On Friday, NYC had 57,000 confirmed cases, more than one-fourth of all cases in the U.S. One day last week had more 911 calls than on 9/11. The EMT’s are completely overwhelmed and with inadequate resources. Ambulance crews from all over the country are coming in to help alleviate the burden. Dispatchers need to spell out the names of New York streets so the out of town crews can put it in their GPS.
Everyone at the hospital is settling into a new normal routine. Every day – more expansions, more admissions, more death. Previously healthy people are no longer able to walk across the room without losing their breath. A patient in their 30’s was admitted, previously healthy, who required increasing amounts of oxygen. Started to get more uncomfortable, discussed early intubation, patient refused, said they weren’t ready. When I came into work yesterday, they had died overnight. Difficult to understand how that happens.
Yesterday at noon, three “Codes” were called on three separate floors, all Covid patients. Three separate teams performed chest compressions, delivered medications, intubated patients at the same time. All three patients die. One hour later, two separate “Codes” called simultaneously on two separate floors. Chest compressions, medications, intubate; both patients die.
This is not like anything else.