We are proud to honor Israel Rocha, Jr.Chief Executive Officer, Executive administration of Elmhurst Hospital in Queens, New York., and the following three departments; Nursing , Pulmonary Medicine/Critical care, and Emergency Medicine.
At the height of the COVID-19 Pandemic, Elmhurst hospital was the pandemic hospital of the USA.
Elmhurst Hospital, in Queens, New York, is a 545-bed city hospital that serves as a safety-net institution for a largely working-class immigrant population. The novel coronavirus has quickly spread through this vulnerable community, and the hospital is currently operating at more than 100% capacity. In an effort to free up precious beds, dozens of non-Covid-related cases are being transferred to other facilities. Inpatient wards are overwhelmed with those who, under different circumstances, would belong in intensive care units. This is the “epicenter within the epicenter” of the Covid-19 crisis in New York City.
Elmhurst Hospital set up a tent — one of the first in New York — outside of the emergency department. This stemmed the tide in three ways: First, it kept non-critically ill patients out of the emergency room and away from risk. Second, it allowed us to assign physicians who typically work in ambulatory clinics to the tent, freeing up ER doctors for the more critical cases. Finally, in the face of unprecedented demand, New York City hospitals have constrained supplies that need to be judiciously managed for high-risk patients. Keeping the critically ill apart from the non-critically ill helps us allocate resources appropriately.
The national shortage of gowns, masks, gloves, and other materials that keep medical staff safe has created a bottleneck and forced us to find creative ways to conserve. For example, Elmhurst has contained suspected Covid patients in a specific, separate area of the hospital under negative pressure, which helps prevent cross-contamination between rooms. Providers working in a Covid section of the hospital can feasibly wear one N95 mask and face shield throughout a shift, while still protecting themselves from infection. While not an ideal long-term solution, it’s allowed Elmhurst to continue seeing and admitting new patients at a reasonable pace while slowing the burn rate of precious PPE.
Already, on multiple occasions, doctors at Elmhurst have scrambled to find a ventilator for a critically ill Covid-19 patient. We nervously anticipate the day when we will not have one. “Make more ventilators” is an obvious solution, but ventilators are complex machines, difficult to produce quickly, and they have been subject to an enormous surge in global demand. We need them immediately — not next month or next week.
In response, we have freed up existing ventilators in operating rooms and obtained others from less impacted hospitals in our health system. This has only been possible as elective surgical cases are put on hold, but it also offers a national model for finding urgent supplies in forgotten places.
We at Humanitarians of the World Inc, invited Elmhurst hospital staff to be honored at our COVID-19 Champions awards Gala 2020., but they was not able to attend due to the COVID-19 Pandemic and a busy schedule of the head doctors.
So we were invited to Elmhurst hospital where we presented the COVID-19 Champions awards-2020, to the following departments: Israel Rocha, Jr.Chief Executive Officer, accepted Executive administration COVID-19 Champions award, Alfredo Astua, MD, Pulmonary Medicine/Critical care, Dr. Stuart Kessler , Director Department of Emergency Medicine. Joan M. Curcio, MD, Nursing .
Mr Rocha, went on to say we employ close to four thousand people in Elmhurst hospital, we will be very happy to honor each and every one of the four thousand employees, with the COVID-19 Champions awards-2020.
I like to thank Dr.Adal Hussain, Founder of Humanitarians of the World Inc, and Mr Urgen Sherpa , President , United Sherpa Association Inc, for bestowing these wonderful honors.
Mr Rocha, went on to say, your recognition of our efforts warms our hearts and inspires us as we continue to care for patients during the current healthcare crisis. Please be safe and well.