PALM HEROES: Honoring Those Helping on the Frontlines and Beyond During COVID-19
It’s been said that not all heroes wear capes and that has been proven over the past few weeks from people who have put their own lives on hold to help those that are in need. These heroes are the medical and healthcare workers on the frontline, risking their lives and the lives of their families. It also includes teachers doing all they can to turn their classroom into a virtual learning experience. The nurses who have to figure out how to do their best job and protect themselves and others during a shortage of supplies, and we can’t forget the essential workers at our stores and making the many deliveries to all of us staying home. Throughout this time Palm will be featuring these stories and showing our recognition to all that are fighting the good fight. Meet our Palm Heroes.
We’re kicking off our series with Dr. Divaker Joshi, a Physician and Anesthesiologist from the Bay Area. Dr. Joshi shares with us the new and ever-changing world of his hospital and how he has to adjust to doing the job he’s always done to now joining his team and others to care for COVID-19 patients. Learn more about his story below.
Meet Dr. Divaker Joshi.
What’s your name and occupation?
Divakar Joshi, Physician Anesthesiologist and Physician Operating Room Director.
Where do you work?
I work in a large medical group in Walnut Creek and live in Danville, CA.
What is your typical day?
With the pandemic, our world is facing, our hospitals are working fast to adjust to the new demands and needs. This has translated into creation and implementation of new workflows and lots of education to treat patients while maintaining safety. This all has translated to a very busy world in healthcare these days. In addition to this, my job includes the usual day of a hospital-based anesthesiologist- care for perioperative patients, obstetrics, and responding to emergencies in the hospital (eg- ICU and ER). I am required to perform high-risk procedures with appropriate PPE. Procedures such as intubation (placing a breathing tube), lines are the typical ones while I am on duty. As you can imagine, I am required to carry and wear many items to aid in these procedures and for immediate communication with hospital team members (eg- pager, larger phones, stethoscope, Code Blue bag, etc). The necklace Palm phone's size and position allow me to conveniently stay in communication with my loved ones without really adding anything to my pockets. I do not even notice it when it's on and never worry about losing it.
How are you protecting your loved ones when you get home?
Because I have high exposure risk to the pandemic, protecting my loved ones starts with keeping us all educated on the latest recommendations from my local and national medical societies, the CDC, and WHO. We take general steps that all of us are hopefully exercising to 'flatten the curve". Simple, but important steps include: hand-washing (soap and warm water for 20 seconds), wiping down the surface (including grocery packages) with a viricidal wipe, avoid face/eye rubbing, and appropriate social distancing.
I am glad that my family is able to stay home at all times as part of our shelter in place order. Due to my occupation, I am required and eager to help treat and contain the ongoing pandemic like most of my colleagues. After my shift, I make sure to soap wash or wipe my Palm phone (glad it's water-resistant), hand wash, and change out of my scrub attire. When I get home, I remove my clothing in the garage and go straight to the shower. Even though it’s very difficult, I maintain a 6ft distance from family members and occupy a limited area of the home that is "my corner." I also sleep in a separate room and use a separate bathroom. For now, this has to be the way of life.
How do you stay connected with family?
Given the increased demands in healthcare, my workdays have lengthened, and my normal contact with family members has been limited. Because of this, effective easy communication (phone, text, video) has become an even more important part of our lives while I’m at work. With my Palm Phone hanging from my neck, I can easily grab it – no searching through pockets around the other phones, pagers, or stethoscopes I have, or trying to figure out what desk or nurse station I may have left it at. It's always unobtrusively and conveniently there. Its 2-ounce weight makes it virtually unnoticeable to me and allows me to easily get on the phone to hear my family's voice, share a fun text, or send them a video message. I have found the size, functionality, and design of the Palm phone to be highly useful in my line of work. If I can carry something without it weighing me down or being noticeable while creating tremendous value, it is an enormous advantage.
I hear that it has amazing physical fitness applications, so once the pandemic ends and we begin to get back to normal life, I hope to work off my "Quarantine Fifteen" with the help of my Palm.
We want to send a huge thank you to Dr. Joshi for taking the time to chat with us during this busy time. We will be featuring our selected heroes every Friday, so continue to check-in with us to follow these amazing stories of people who are stepping up when they’re needed most. If you know someone who deserves to be a Palm Hero, please email their story to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.