Every time doctors and nurses intubate a COVID-19 patient, we are at grave risk because coronavirus is aerosolized and expelled from the patient’s throat during the difficult intubation process.
These airborne coronavirus particles threaten all of the medical professionals in the room assisting the patient. As an ER doctor in Maryland, I was losing sleep over this, because we all know that we cannot afford to have our medical professionals contract COVID-19 and be pulled from the frontlines during this crisis.
To solve this problem, a colleague and I hand-built prototypes of a protective unit called an intubation box using open-source blueprints found online.
This simple yet critical invention allows a doctor to intubate a patient while safely containing the aerosolized COVID-19 virus so the attending hospital staff are not placed at risk. (Watch how it works here.)
So far, we been able to donate one intubation box to each of the following hospital emergency rooms:
Anne Arundel Medical Center
MedStar St. Mary's Hospital
University of Maryland Baltimore Washington Medical Center
Adventist Healthcare Ft. Washington Medical Center
Walter Reed National Military Medical Center
Adventist Healthcare White Oak Medical Center
University of Maryland Charles Regional Medical Center
Doctors Community Hospital (Laurel)
We have also received requests for intubation boxes from doctors in Howard County, in Prince George’s County, on the Eastern Shore, and from hospitals out-of-state.
We are requesting donations to fund the manufacture of 50 more intubation boxes to protect hospital staff from COVID-19 so they can save patient lives.
Each box costs $140 to manufacture and deliver to the hospital of your choice, and is produced at a medical-grade manufacturer in White Marsh, Maryland.
Please contribute as much as you can. The lead time for manufacturing is three days, so there is no time to spare as we approach the height of our curve in hospitals late next week.
If you can fund just $14 toward an intubation box, or $70 to cover half the cost of a box, or $140 to fully fund an intubation box, or even more, it will be money incredibly well-spent. We cannot afford to see our medical staff infected by incredibly contagious aerosolized coronavirus while they try to perform life-saving intubation on a patient.
Please donate -- and please note if you have a preference for your money to fund intubation boxes at your local hospital or if your funds should simply go where most needed.
Thank you for your generosity!
With heartfelt gratitude,
Ron Elfenbein, M.D.
P.S. Since it was not possible to receive IRS approval of our 501(c)(3) non-profit status rapidly, we have set up a bank account at Howard Bank in the name of Help the Frontlines , LLC. Every penny of your donation will be spent on getting a Help the Frontlines intubation box to the hospital of your choice. There is absolutely no profit being made, no “cut,” no “administrative fees.” We need every dollar to send as many intubation boxes as possible to our hospitals.
***FOR MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS: TO REQUEST AN INTUBATION BOX FOR YOUR ER/ICU, PLEASE EMAIL Dr. Ron Elfenbein at ELFENBER@YAHOO.COM
"What a brilliant idea. These intubation boxes need to be in every ER and ICU in Maryland."
Gary W. Pushkin, M.D.
The Maryland State Medical Society
**NEW!** PatCen (Patient Central Healthcare) is a company which produces revolutionary new OneScope Video Laryngoscopes. Pat Cen has offered to provide one of their Video Laryngoscopes for free to every hospital that has received one of our intubation boxes!
The OneScope Video Laryngoscope is ideal for intubating Covid-19 patients. A comment from a recent user captures this point: "I am pleased to report that the OneScope is performing brilliantly and is considered a very valuable tool in the midst of the COVID pandemic. As you may already be aware, much publicity has been released regarding the risks of intubation of a COVID positive patient. Much of the risk can be mitigated by the use of portable video laryngoscopes. I have instituted the OneScope as the primary tool for intubation of these patients, primarily due to its portability, ease of use, ease/speed of decontamination and ability to review the intubation via video and screen shot.”
We are excited and grateful to be able to provide even more assistance to hospitals by pairing every intubation box with a donated Video Laryngoscope! Let's keep going!
- Cathy Do
- Ali Reza Sabbaghzadeh