Home Coronavirus Open Letter From Healthcare Providers to Gov. Northam: “We beg you...

Open Letter From Healthcare Providers to Gov. Northam: “We beg you to use your exceptional powers immediately -– literally TODAY -– to solve the desperate medical supply shortage that is thwarting our efforts to control this pandemic before it reaches the point of no return”

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Paige Perriello, who is a pediatrician, just posted (on Twitter) this open letter from around 60 (so far) of Virginia’s frontline healthcare providers to Gov. Ralph Northam regarding the urgent need for medical supplies, neeed as part of efforts to “control this pandemic before it reaches the point of no return.”

March 20, 2020

Dear Governor Northam and Secretary Carey,

Medical professionals are risking our lives on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis. We beg you to use your exceptional powers immediately -– literally TODAY -– to solve the desperate medical supply shortage that is thwarting our efforts to control this pandemic before it reaches the point of no return. As a doctor, you understand the gravity of the crisis we are facing as a Commonwealth and country. You have the power to help us, and we urge you to act immediately.

We need two things right now (yesterday):

  • personal protective equipment: surgical masks, N95 masks, masks with face shields, disposable gowns, protective gloves, and hand sanitizer
  • testing kits and related supplies: nasopharyngeal swabs, viral culture media, and testing kits. For weeks we’ve been told those tests are just a few days away. It’s now clear that without your intervention they will not be here in time, if ever. We know the federal government has failed, but we need state and regional leaders like you to be part of the solution.

Here’s how you can help:

  1. Funnel existing supplies to the frontlines now — Many of the items we urgently need are sitting in schools, labs, and supply rooms of businesses that are currently closed. These organizations would be happy to contribute to the common good. We know because we’ve already received generous donations from our neighbors. We need your help to scale that exchange.
  2. Invent and incentivize solutions: Our neighbors across Virginia want to help solve this crisis, but they need direction and coordination from the state government. Distilleries are changing production lines to make soaps and sanitizers. Healthcare workers are learning to fashion handmade masks. You can spur more to join the charge. Give a Commonwealth address tomorrow about our needs and ask every Virginian –- our inventors, entrepreneurs, community organizers, and volunteers -– to commit themselves to helping solve this problem.
  3. Establish clear communication lines between frontline medical professionals and the Virginia Department of Health — We need a database of every healthcare provider so we can efficiently convey our urgent needs as we adapt to changing conditions. To date, communication has been concentrated on major hospitals, ignoring independent primary care providers and other facilities on the front lines.

Given the outbreak’s rapid spread, each day that you wait to establish an emergency supply protocol means more medical providers will fall ill, which threatens the catastrophic collapse of our entire healthcare system.

Virginians are ready and able to help, but we need your leadership. Please act now.

If you’re a Virginia health care provider and would like to join us in signing this letter, please write us at PPEVirginia@gmail.com.

Sincerely (and desperately),
Paige Perriello, MD Charlottesville
Sarah Knight, MD Charlottesville
Gemila Bouber, MD Charlottesville
Alaina Brown, MD Charlottesville
Lori Balaban, MD Charlottesville
Michael Spaeder, MD Charlottesville
Kellen Squire, RN Charlottesville
Neeral Shah, MD Charlottesville
Gregory Gelburd, MD Charlottesville
Kathryn Laughon, PhD, RN Charlottesville
G. Andrew Meyer, MD Charlottesville
Deirdre Donovan, MD Charlottesville
Carlos Armengol, MD Charlottesville
Vanessa Gregg, MD Charlottesville
Karyn Wolfe, MD Charlottesville
David Balaban, MD Charlottesville
Taison Bell, MD Charlottesville
B. Cameron Webb, MD, JD Charlottesville
Kyle Enfield, MD Charlottesville
Melissa Sacco, MD Charlottesville
Kendra Charles, MA Charlottesville
Christopher G Vann, BSN, RN Charlottesville
Jocelyn K Schauer, MD Charlottesville
Karen L Baer, MSN, RN Staunton
Jeanetta Frye, MD Charlottesville
Mohan Nadkarni, MD Charlottesville
Jennifer Fontenot, PNP Charlottesville
Teresa Hashisaki, MD Charlottesville
Paul Wisman, MD Charlottesville
Rob Trundle, MD Charlottesville
Kathy Mika, MD Charlottesville
Beverly Ford, FNP-c Charlottesville
William Fox, MD Charlottesville
Carrie Sopata, MD Charlottesville
Donald Dudley, MD Charlottesville
Amy Malek, MD Charlottesville
Candyce Dorsey, PNP Charlottesville
Brian Wentworth, MD Charlottesville
Danielle W. Donovan, RN Charlottesville
Farren H. Dodson, RN Charlottesville
Susan Gayda, RN Charlottesville
Loretta Long, PCT Charlottesville
Kelli Horowski, RN Charlottesville
Mary E Daniels, PCT Charlottesville
Jennifer B. Miller, MD Charlottesville
Bridget E Yancey, PCT Charlottesville
Irene Rader, RN Charlottesville
Michele Ferrell, RN Charlottesville
Joanna Donovan, RN Charlottesville
Cynthia M. Yoshida, MD Charlottesville
Andrew D Mihalek, MD Charlottesville
Leigh-Ann Webb, MD Charlottesville
Ebony Jade Hilton, MD Charlottesville
Nicolas M. Intagliata, MD Charlottesville
Chantal Scott, MD Charlottesville
Sheila Davis, MD Charlottesville
Amanda Jones, MD Charlottesville