Louisville Medicine Volume 67, Issue 12 - Page 6

EVERYDAY HEROES “We shall not fail or falter; we shall not weaken or tire. Neither the sudden shock of battle, nor the long-drawn trials of vigilance and exer- tion will wear us down. Give us the tools and we will finish the job.” - Winston Churchill, February 1941 A s I wrote this final article in my year as President of the Greater Louisville Medical Society, no one could dispute that we are living in a different world. Under normal circumstances, this should be the opportunity to recap the year, highlighting various GLMS achievements and projects, thanking those who made a difference for our society and for me personally in my professional development. However, as we all know, everything has changed. By the time of publication in the May issue of Louisville Medicine, we may be finally coming to grips with the full impact of how the coronavirus pandemic has affected our community, our state and our nation. None of us could have predicted this grave pandemic nor the immense emotional and physical toll. Undoubtedly, the impact on health care workers will be among the most profound. Thus, I devote this final article to those members of our profession on the frontlines who continue to put their own lives at risk to care for patients, and to recognizing the leaders in our city and state that have guided us through this most difficult time. When the COVID-19 pandemic first came to the forefront, I admit I was overcome by a sense of helplessness. How was I to care for my patients, my office staff, my practice, my family? My myriad of questions collided with the ever-changing information received daily from the World Health Organization, National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the media. I believe it is safe to say none of us were prepared and we were all in search of answers. I, like many of you, looked for guidance from peers, professional organizations and our political leaders. Much gratitude should go to Gov. Andy Beshear during this crisis. His actions to help mitigate the spread of the virus have been 4 LOUISVILLE MEDICINE critical. His calm, sincere and informed approach has provided constant reassurance to the citizens in our state. Dr. Sarah Moyer, the Director of the Louisville Metro Public Health and Wellness and a member of the GLMS Board of Governors, her physician partners and staff, along with Mayor Greg Fischer, have done an outstanding job keeping the citizens of Louisville informed on a local level. All of this has resulted in actionable intelligence and provision of a solid strategic plan to “flatten the curve” and protect our city and the commonwealth. There should be nothing short of the utmost admiration for the first responders in our community. Whether police, firefighters, EMS or health care workers, we must show appreciation for every individual who has tirelessly and willingly helped patients within our community. Our GLMS staff in partnership with our GLMS Foundation established a PPE collection drive to support them along with organizing a medication delivery service to those in the community who are quarantined or self-isolating. Retired physicians have volunteered to mobilize prescription transfers and the coordi- nation of pick-ups and drop-offs. Medical students and our younger physician members have delivered these medications throughout the city. This spirit of volunteerism is what makes GLMS such an important part of our community and speaks to our never-ending desire to render care above all. In closing, I would like to share something I recalled my wife, Dr. Carolyn Burns, had written years ago in an editorial for the Kentucky Medical Association Journal when she served on its editorial board. She wrote about a beautiful mosaic in the lobby of Jewish Hospital that she had found so inspiring. The mosaic displays Maimonide’s Prayer. Maimonide was a 12th century physician/philosopher. The