As we've watched the COVID-19 pandemic unfold in New York City, we've thought a lot about the doctors and nurses on the frontline and wondered how they were coping. Allison’s friend, Dr. Liza Hartofilis, is a chief resident in the Emergency Department at Columbia/NYPresbyterian. She and her colleagues are working long hours away from family and friends to help heal New York during this overwhelming crisis. They're seeing things they can't unsee and experiencing tragedies that people like the majority of us – quarantined at home with Netflix, snacks and wine – will never understand.
After a Zoom meeting with several Emergency Department administrators at Columbia, we learned that the staff at the four EDs have to bring in or go out to buy coffee during their long shifts. Due to these circumstances, their first request was for coffee makers and capsules. Columbia/NYPresbyterian is responsible for four emergency departments. As a start, we will be providing each department with a total of nine large coffee machines and enough coffee pods to get each ED through at least June (> 32,000 individual coffee pods!). We're also working to continuously stock the new flex breakrooms with protein shakes, protein bars, and less-healthy-but-more-comforting-snacks like Snickers, Pringles and Oreos.
This is just a start. As their needs evolve, we plan on staying close to our friends at Columbia/NY Presbyterian to support them every step of the way and let them know they are not going through this alone.
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