“Doctora, the sound of your voice has been the best medicine for me”.
When what turned out to be our first case of COVD-19 walked through the doors of our community health center, we had the first of what would be hundreds of the same conversation. “It sounds like you could have COVID-19, I’m really sorry you don’t qualify for testing.”
With a national shortage of tests, only those who met stringent criteria – those most likely to be positive – could be tested. The rest – the vast majority of likely COVID cases – remained in limbo. “But what if I have it? My mom has COPD. Can I even go home?” “I drive a bus. Do you know how many people could get sick if I have it?” With limited knowledge of how the disease spread and minimal access to PPE, we had many of these conversations on our cell phones, to patients on the other side of a closed exam room door…..more