Dr. Varinder Singh: Coronavirus At Ground Zero


I contracted cove in the middle of March. I had it For two weeks you know I have to tell you that Two things work with this disease. They really do relation. Works Right. Stay isolated the other thing that works to speak to eat We're looking at our conversion rates for our doctors and our frontline workers a appropriate use of PD. Well used we have less than six percent conversion rate but we still have the six percent conversion rate and I think. I'm pretty sure that's probably what happened to me on the front lines and I kind of look at my Cova. Domus all COVADONGA MRS as either. You're really sick or you're not that right it's like a define line And and if you survive it Categorized you in the you weren't that sick 'cause I've seen enough and I think Steve is probably seen enough to know that people that really do get sick with this. Don't where were you one of the guys that just had Hardly anything as far as symptoms are concerned or did you have some serious symptoms. I woke up on Tuesday a Tuesday night. I felt a little headache. And that's one of the known presenting symptoms of it again. I didn't think anything of it I just was like. Are you been working a lot doing a lot of the frontline ships on strange physical and emotional and I woke up? The next morning was Wednesday morning and I felt viral right. My eyes were puffy. They were watery And I had congestion and I knew enough that I should not go to work. I assumed I was awesome. I went and got tested. Did a chest x-ray the blood work and all emergency rooms right now and this is something that the public should know you know we are Cova contained and are pathways for evaluation in American healthcare. Right now are done scientifically. They're done through epidemiology so that you are actually at a low risk of getting Cova seeking medical care and that is very very important because I think a lot of people believe. Oh my God. All those patients are in that building. And if I walk in there that's where I'm actually GonNa get it and that's not true so I did. What everybody should be doing is I went to the emergency room. They had a whole pathway. The screen me before I even got really in the building a pathway which was the viral evaluation pathway Got Tested got chest. Xrays saturation's You know positive and we felt like I could manage myself at home. I can tell you that about four or five days into it. I could not remember what I had done five minutes ago. So this is important because we clearly know that the five to eight day window from the original diagnosis is a critical period of time. Steve Seen this. I've seen this people doing much better much better. They Crash Bang the inflammatory response. And so I actually got into an argument one week into it with my employees health director from the from my home self-isolated saying I'm ready to come back to work. And she was like no. You're not I'm not clearing and I. It's been a week. I have seventy two hours. No fever no cough. I WANNA come back to work. It was like no way. She was great and our after that phone call. It came back on and it came back on me much much worse than it did. The first time and a wound up in the next day. severely dehydrated. I've never been dehydrated in my life. The gave me fluid bag after bag and I just was like I need another one. You know what my own body was saying to me. You need more of this Listen you always become a better doctor when your patient you learn more empathy? You learn what's going on in somebody's head that sphere its anxiety. It's the same questions. I had the same off of like. Wow I still got a big run left in the. I'm not ready to go yet. I mean all the things that every one of us thinks about ourselves they think about and it makes you more empathetic incompassion. Tell us a little of how it makes you feel as doctors in the middle of this thing as you see us opening up with a higher base of infected people then we had even when we locked down in the first place. I don't think we've been hit nearly as hard as New York has. I'm actually very concerned embracing for major impact and very frustrated with the concept that people feel that it's okay to start opening businesses and re assimilate into society the higher density of the virus. I think may much more dangerous than it was in February. The fact that people have basically had enough with social distancing and masking and their frustration which will cause them to be even more lax than maybe they were before I think creates a potentially very dangerous set of circumstances and I think our hospitals will have a huge surge like we had initially but now with a base of patients who already have the disease but enough. You're going to add a sudden peak to that. We're going to feel that pressure. Healthcare professionals be at risk in patients will not be able to get the services that they need and that's at our level in Los Angeles. So how do you feel doctor saying? I can't imagine the pressure that you guys are under right now. At one point we had over four hundred forty patients in the hospital. We would like to think that what we learned early on and disseminated nationally and internationally helped you of you know we. I know that I was on multiple track groups that first week with physicians all over the East Coast positions of Midwest positions on the West Coast. And we still kept those going. Those first six weeks of this awful will you subject to some of the shortages that we all saw on the CUOMO press conference. We knew we were at just enough levels. And so every day you would wake up and you come in and you'd say how many people are under investigation. The merchants from how many people came in and it was just every day more and more and more and then we were scrambling to get stuff. We had People Donating de we had people Donating whatever they could do to to help us get what we needed to get through. It was overwhelming and it still remains overwhelming. You know a Steve. You've seen this when they first started coming in the people that we were discharging by because we were filled so we were trying to triage people to stay at home and call them to see how they were doing. And we all talk about it. You know some fifty five year old guy who comes with a bilateral pneumonia and has a PO to set of ninety four in the pre co era hundred percent would have gotten admitted right just for his own medical health and just because we were scrambling did an amazing job of like built making beds every night every night every day we make more bets but we would try and manage a lot of those patients at home call them and follow them and make sure that they were doing okay Just doing that early on was you realized that we were into something that we've never done before. Can I ask you how many ventilators you have it at Lenox Hill? I don't know the exact number but I can get it for you. Know it's interesting. Everyone talks about. Do you have an ventilators? We have capacity of one hundred ventilators but it always say and who is going to run one hundred ventilators. Did the the rate limiting step on that is not the number ventilators at least in our institutions. We have an ICU. Team of seven people. We could expand that ever so slightly are then going to say seven. Doctors are going to be running hundred ventilators not to mention all the other consoles on the

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