What Helps Caregivers the Most?

By Dr. Marijka Grey

Babies are still being born, gallbladders are still bursting, cancer is still being diagnosed and people are still getting into motor vehicle accidents.

This is why the healthcare system is on edge. We can take care of all of the above. But all of the above and a pandemic that requires the highest level of care for those that are seriously ill as well as the extent of our medical expertise – that's challenging to say the least.

So what can you do?

  • If you're in manufacturing and you have personal protective equipment (especially N95 or other masks) - please contact your local hospital, medical society or health department to donate any stock you can spare. We may not need it right now, but we will need it in the future.

  • Shelter in place or work from home, as directed. Some regions are already starting to see how effective this has been to #flattenthecurve.

  • Remember (and remind your friends) that not everyone needs to be tested for COVID-19. Only if you have fever, chills, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing would you usually qualify to be considered for testing. Help us by encouraging folks with minor symptoms to not overwhelm testing sites – virtual visits and online symptom checkers are great options for reassurance.

  • Keep your actual circle small, but your virtual circle big. Limit contact with others in accordance with physical distancing guidelines. However, remember that we need each other now more than ever. Leverage technology to connect with your support system as often as you can.

  • If you're not sure how to treat loved ones at home if they are asked to self-quarantine, refer to the latest CDC document on 10 things you can do to manage symptoms: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/downloads/10Things.pdf

  • If you’re healthy, donate blood.  Blood and blood products are always in high demand during a health crisis and, as blood typically has a shelf life of only 6 weeks – many areas are starting to run critically low just as it’s needed the most.

  • Check in on your vulnerable neighbors and family members.  Our elderly and infirm need us now more than ever – please pepper your days with a healthy dose of #humankindness.

Together, we can all pitch in to stay healthy and connected.

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