Marc Schiffman and Tamatha Fenster are organizing this fundraiser.
Thank you so much for donating to the Voice Love Program! We created this program which we believe finally solves 2 major tragedies of this pandemic: 1-patients sick in the hospital or nursing homes are without family as visiting hours are severely restricted or even eliminated. In many cases, as has been widely reported, people are dying alone with family members unable to say goodbye. Other comatose patients don't have access to the therapeutic sounds of their loved ones voices. 2-nurses when they have a few spare minutes are heroically risking their lives to hold cell phones or FaceTime up directly to these patients to try and help the families get some connection. Families have reported finding the visual component to be a traumatic experience, and in addition, our nurses must be protected! We have adapted a speaker that connects to an app that multiple family members anywhere in the world can download. We place the speaker in a developed medical-grade case and hang it right on the bed next to the patient or anywhere in the room. Whenever family members want or feel inspired, they can talk, sing, pray...etc into their phone which now acts as a walkie talkie. Clergy can offer last rites from remote locations, as they are also not allowed to visit. Non-english speaking patients can have communication, as translator services are not used and require exposure. Family members from Australia, Europe, and South America have been able to connect to their relatives 24/7, versus one family member for a brief moment in which a nurse is risking getting exposed. As this device does not need any assistance, once it goes in the room, nurses (the biggest heroes to date in this outbreak) can focus on their tasks and not risk additional exposure and PPE to compassionately try and help the families connect. Almost 20K messages were sent by families within the first few weeks ( less than twenty devices) in a major NYC hospital where we developed and piloted this, demonstrating how much this really filled a need. No one knows how this pandemic will play out and evolve, but we now can create virtual visiting hours during this crisis, which family can control, and dramatically lessen the risks to nurses across the world. Your donations will be used for purchasing the devices, and getting them to hospitals, nursing homes and hospices. As will be reported, several of the comatose patients became responsive for the first time within a day of the speakers being placed, and this led to how we named this program. Thank you for your support and time!! With love, Tamatha Fenster, MD and Marc Schiffman, MD