A tale of two pandemics: Around the time of the coronavirus outbreak, 2019 also marked a full century since the death of Sir William Osler, who revolutionized medical training. Despite some lingering debate over whether Dr. Osler’s pneumonia-related death should be counted among the 50 million lost to the 1918 influenza pandemic, his notes suggest that he believed the flu precipitated his demise. As a chaplain who teaches medical humanities and ...

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An excerpt from Parenting in a Pandemic: How to help your family through COVID-19. When my husband and I made the decision to purchase a house outside of New York City, the prior owners left behind a trampoline. The trampoline is big, above ground, and in fair ...

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Amidst the crushing human and economic carnage inflicted by the COVID-19 pandemic, one innocent bystander has been cowering in the dark corner of medicine’s past, clinging to its final breaths of iconicity: the beloved stethoscope.

For over two centuries, there has been no better physician archetype than the quintessential rubber tube donned confidently over a crisp white coat. This recognizable image has been with us in part since 1816, ...

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One commonality amongst all reporting associated with the COVID-19 pandemic: “unprecedented.” Unprecedented circumstances, unprecedented symptomatology, unprecedented prevalence, and now, unprecedented velocity. “300 million doses of a safe, effective vaccine for COVID-19 by January 2021”—the project: Operation Warp Speed. On January 20, 2020, the first case of COVID-19 was reported in the United States; fast forward to July 2020 and the National Institutes of Health ...

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Imagine a future where you wake up, go to the bathroom, pick up a small strip of paper, and put it in a tube with your saliva and saline.  By the time you are done with part of your morning routine, within 15 minutes or so, the paper will tell you if that morning, you are positive for the novel coronavirus or not. And you can do that randomly on any occasion.  ...

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The work of our lungs is absolutely essential for the health of our bodies. While the whole world is focusing on protecting our lungs from failing us during the COVID-19 pandemic, we urge a moratorium on the sale of all inhalable products, like cigarettes, cigars, e-cigarettes, vape pens, and respectfully request current smokers to try to quit. We are physicians in the San Francisco Bay Area, concerned for patients ...

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“Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.” - Albert Einstein “Mr. Thomas, are you OK? Sir, are you OK?”  It was a full clinic day, and I had just improvised a treatment on him. I had met this patient, “Mr. Thomas,” only once before.  After meeting me ...

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There is absolutely no playbook for what we are all experiencing today. The changes coming at us have been swift, mercurial, and frightening. Governments, businesses, nonprofits, and individuals have scrambled to cope with relentless waves of chaos in the wake of COVID-19 and civil unrest. I have continued to keep my solo psychiatry practice in Eldorado open and have moved to a telemedicine platform, which definitely has its trade-offs! In the ...

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Throughout 2020, the United States has been playing catchup against the coronavirus. As several well-researched articles have noted, lack of appropriate and timely response has been at the forefront and can be attributed to numerous factors including the highly contagious nature of the virus and, simultaneously, a delay in formulating an adequate medical management and containment strategy. Unfortunately, this catchup game has led to one of the greatest losses of ...

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It was April 5, 2020. In the months prior, I imagined, she had been grappling with the isolation of her newfound unemployment.  The pandemic's solidarity was possibly a relief: the rare solace of the permission to take a pause.  Her new days were partly spent with long walks near Baker Beach, saluted by the loyal, majestic Golden Gate, the cool San Francisco sun embracing her and her high-spirited two-year-old son. ...

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