A message from Tom Jackiewicz, Keck Medicine CEO on April 3
To our valued patients,
It’s hard to believe that in Los Angeles we are closing out our third week of quarantine due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many of us have become experts at social distancing, stocking up our kitchens and communicating with friends and family via phone or video chats.
During these uncertain times, we want to reassure you that Keck Medicine of USC is continuing to marshal our many resources, energies and talents toward safeguarding your health. We have taken all necessary precautions to provide you with the same excellent level of care we always have. And no matter what comes, we will meet any new challenges quickly and nimbly to protect you and your loved ones.
We also wanted to share with you some inspiring news:
We’ve trained medical residents to cover for critical care nurses. Our surgical residents have been trained in critical care nursing skills, such as how to perform blood draws, administer medication, put in intravenous lines and adjust a ventilator. We now have an extra line of defense to help with the anticipated surge of COVID-19 patients.
We’re getting some creative help with protective gear. Our radiology department is coordinating efforts using 3D printers to supplement our inventory of N95 masks. The USC Viterbi School of Engineering has donated stacks of protective gear and created UV boxes for us to sterilize our protective gear. The engineering school and the USC Iovine and Young Academy are creating custom face shields outfitted with 3D-printed head straps for our workers. We are thankful for the ingenuity and resourcefulness of our colleagues, as well as for the generosity of our community, which continues to donate supplies for our health care workers. If you are interested in donating protective gear, please check our website for details.
We’ve launched a Care for the Caregiver program for staff. We know that for our health care workers to be able to take care of patients, we need to take care of them. Along with USC, we are offering high-risk staff free housing so they can self-quarantine or have a place to restore. We are also providing them with access to counseling sessions to promote their well-being and offer emotional support. We are grateful for our courageous health care workers and want to do everything we can to support them.
Together we face this unprecedented health crisis, and together we will get through it. As a reminder, please continue to stay home as much as possible to keep each other safe and ease the burden on health care workers. Also, please keep taking advantage of telemedicine for all non-COVID-19 medical appointments — this is the best way for you to receive care without risk.
Thank you for putting your trust in Keck Medicine, and we wish you and your loved ones the very best.