Dr. Matt Birnholz reviews more nominees for our Heroes in Healthcare program and what their peers have to say about their efforts.
Coming to you from the ReachMD studios, this is a special edition of COVID-19: On the Frontlines. I’m Dr. Matt Birnholz, and as part of our “Heroes in Healthcare” initiative, we’re showing our thanks for those clinicians who’ve gone well beyond the call of duty amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Today we’ll share some inspiring nominations, written in by their peers.
Up first is Ms. Elsa Cunha, a registered nurse at Danbury Hospital who’s made a big impact on COVID-19 testing sites in Connecticut. In the words of her colleagues,
Elsa has gone above and beyond her responsibilities as a nurse during these difficult times. She voluntarily deployed herself to the symptomatic COVID testing center in the beginning of the pandemic. She worked outside in all weather conditions for 10 hours a day in the drive-up testing center and went weeks without a day off. Her hard work and efforts were noted when she was quickly promoted to lead nurse at the testing site. Through her experiences, she has developed new workflows and opened several other testing sites. She now manages multiple testing locations and continues to go above and beyond, often going in to help on her days off. She’s a caring and hard-working nurse whose leadership skills during this time are unmatched.
Another healthcare hero is Dr. Ryan Brown, an emergency medicine physician at the Marcus Grady Trauma Center in Atlanta, Georgia. Here’s what one of his colleagues at this level 1 trauma center had to say about him:
Dr. Brown has worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic to serve the city of Atlanta, while also covering many shifts in the COVID-19 ICU. Even when he became infected and was sick at home, he could not wait to test negative again so that he could get back to work serving the Grady community. His job is more than what he does; it's who he is.
Next is Mr. Karl Neubecker, a physician assistant at the Orthopedic Associates of Hartford in Connecticut, who shows his unwavering dedication to serving others in more ways than one. According to one of his peers,
Karl is not only a dedicated Physician Assistant by day seeing patients throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, but he also serves his community evenings and weekends with the Ellington Fire Department. Through the Fire Department, Karl has been on the frontlines helping injured and distressed patients, as well as potentially infected COVID-19 patients. His passion and dedication for helping others and ensuring their well-being never stops,His passion and dedication for helping others and ensuring their well-being never stops whether it’s while wearing a white coat and mask in the office… or fire gear on the scene!
One more healthcare hero for today’s program comes by way of Alaska. Employed through Norton Sound Health Corporation, Dr. Ryan Sherer made a big impact among those affected by the pandemic. Here’s just a snippet of his inspiring story as told by one of his colleagues:
Ryan volunteered to fly out from Nome, Alaska, to the area's rural villages that were having COVID outbreaks. This meant extended periods away from home, risking exposure to the virus, enduring repeated quarantines, and donning awkward, suffocating PPE daily. But in doing so, he brought compassionate, modern healthcare to many native Alaskans who do not have convenient or regular healthcare. His selfless actions have been greatly appreciated.
From all of these stories, it’s clear that compassion seen in action at times like these define heroism in healthcare, and we’re honored to recognize that heroism exhibited by so many on a daily basis.
For ReachMD, I’m Dr. Matt Birnholz. To access more episodes from COVID-19: On the Frontlines, adding your perspectives or recognizing those who’ve made a positive difference in your community, visit us at ReachMD.com and become Part of the Knowledge. Thank you for listening.