A Safe “New Normal” for Cardiac Surgical Appointments during COVID-19

By Adam Pick on May 21, 2020

As Lao Tzu, a Chinese philosopher, once said, “Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality.”

Unfortunately, COVID-19 is now our unexpected reality.  At times, that is hard to accept.  At times, it’s challenging not to think back to the way it was.  At times, I wonder if Lao Tzu lived through a pandemic.  Regardless, we must move forward. We must evolve.

 

Patient Being Examined During COVID-19 (Northwestern Medicine)

 

Thankfully… This new reality is being managed by courageous medical professionals who are planning and implementing new safeguards and protocols to prevent COVID-19 infections for patients that need cardiac treatment.  For, as we know, cardiac disease – especially fatal valvular disorders including aortic stenosis and mitral regurgitation –  will progress with or without a COVID-19 vaccine.

In a positive way, I was reminded of change and our COVID-19 reality this morning. 

I received an email from The Department of Surgery at Columbia University Medical Center in New York City.  As you may recall, Dr. Craig Smith and his extraordinary team has been in a 100-round heavyweight fight with COVID-19 since the pandemic enveloped New York City. You can learn more here.

In this email to patients and their families, the Columbia Surgery Team addressed the “new normal” for healthcare.  Specifically, the email identifies several measures taken by Columbia to ensure patient safety at cardiac surgical appointments during this coronavirus crisis. From telemedicine to facial protection to re-configured waiting rooms to temperature check-points, Columbia – like many cardiac centers – is taking transformative steps to support cardiac patients that need treatment now.

 

I want to thank the Columbia Surgery Team for sharing this email with me.  It was comforting to see how Columbia is communicating with their patients, implementing new processes to protect patients, and managing patient expectations during cardiac surgical appointments.  To learn more, you can read this post at the Columbia website, “Here’s What You Need To Know Before Your Surgical Appointment”.

It should be noted that Columbia is not alone in making substantial changes and investments for patient protection during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Over the past few weeks, I have spoke with many cardiac centers that are focusing on your protection, focusing on your care, and focusing on the best ways to fix your heart safely.

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Keep on tickin!
Adam


Written by Adam Pick
- Patient & Website Founder

Adam Pick is a heart valve patient and author of The Patient's Guide To Heart Valve Surgery. In 2006, Adam founded HeartValveSurgery.com to educate and empower patients. This award-winning website has helped over 10 million people fight heart valve disease. Adam has been featured by the American Heart Association and Medical News Today.

Adam Pick is a heart valve patient and author of The Patient's Guide To Heart Valve Surgery. In 2006, Adam founded HeartValveSurgery.com to educate and empower patients. This award-winning website has helped over 10 million people fight heart valve disease. Adam has been featured by the American Heart Association and Medical News Today.

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