COVID-19 in the United States of America has surpassed China and every country in Europe quickly and with daily incidence rates higher than what any country has seen so far, it continues to secure its lead even more. Regardless of whether America was under-prepared, did not take it seriously enough in the beginning, or the pathogen is simply gaining momentum, everyone is vulnerable and many are making significant sacrifices in the war effort against COVID-19. Among the many skilled workers of various specialties and backgrounds, AUC alumni on the front lines are inspiring students and recent graduates alike to make the most of their time in isolation for the benefit of relief efforts everywhere.
With clerkships canceled, many clinical students that were left on the sidelines began actively searching for ways to make a difference. We see so many stories on our social media news feeds about the experiences of our friends in healthcare. Our AUC colleagues are on the front lines screening patients, witnessing the suffering it causes first hand, and putting patients on life support. On top of that, they are running out of personal protective equipment, looking for ways to make their own, and even developing symptoms thus being forced into quarantine themselves.
Many are serving in New York – among the chaos of the epicenter, California, Michigan, Florida, Washington state- where America confirmed its first case, and Louisiana – which is seeing the highest growth rate for its population. Former nurses and paramedics are sacrificing their last 6 weeks before residency to serve in their former professions under temporary license renewals.
Current students and those waiting to be matched, are working on various projects, including production, acquisition, and 3D-printing of PPE, joining teams that provide free telehealth service for triage and mental health support while maintaining distancing, showing appreciation to front line workers, gathering information to educate the public, and much more. The AUC COVID Volunteer Group has over 100 members and caught the interest of ADTELEM education who was impressed with the initiative and has vowed to help in any way they can.
AUC Frontline Editor