Look for the Helpers

When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, "Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping."

The COVID-19 pandemic is giving Canadians an unprecedented opportunity to be helpers (and heroes). This post highlights just a few of the stories that have inspired us lately.

For some members of the Lung Health Foundation community, being a hero is as simple as staying home in order to stop the spread of the virus. For others, being a hero means long hours in scrubs and protective gear, caring for the people who need it most. 

Whatever kind of helper you are, thank you for doing your part to make COVID-19 history. We’ve got a long way to go, and we’ll get there by working together.

Sew Inspiring

KINGSTON, ON: A crafty group fills gaps by sewing fabric face masks for healthcare providers

The Ontario Medical Association and Registered Nurses Association of Ontario are stressing the importance of personal protective equipment access for healthcare providers, given expected global shortages of items like N95 masks.
Now a big-hearted group of sewers are on a mission to supply every employee at Kingston Health Sciences Centre with masks. Working in a region that spans from Port Perry to Kingston to Ottawa, the Healthcare Mask Crusaders have set their sights on an ambitious goal: they’re hoping to donate 8000 of their lovingly homemade fabric masks to hospitals and care facilities throughout their area. It looks like they will reach their goal, thanks to a Kingstonist article that has been shared more than 5000 times.
While the masks do not offer the same level of protection as N95 masks, they will be there for the region’s healthcare providers in case an emergency back-up option is ever needed. “The homemade masks will enable our protective equipment to be streamlined only for COVID-19 patients,” says Romney Pierog, a front-line nurse at Kingston General Hospital. “We are trying to help preserve the vital equipment needed for these patients.”
Inspired? Follow the Crusaders on Facebook, and get crafty with a tutorial:

More ventilators. More hope.

LONDON, ON: Fanshawe College loans its ventilators to hospital 

A ventilator moves air in and out of the lungs. Since these machines help those who cannot breathe for themselves, they play a crucial role in treating the most critically ill patients — and they are projected to be in dangerously short supply if the COVID-19 continues to spread. 

Luckily, Fanshawe College has teamed up with London Health Sciences Centre to increase the region’s supply. With Respiratory Therapy classes cancelled, eleven of the college’s ventilator machines have now made it to their new homes at LHSC, thanks to a team that includes people like Yvonne Drasovean, our ORCS Editorial Board Chair! 

Help is a phone call (or web chat) away

Through thick or thin, our Lung Health Line is here for you

The Lung Health Foundation is doing our part to keep chronic lung disease patients from experiencing flare-ups that could send them into the crowded hospital system.

If you need advice about managing your asthma, COPD, pulmonary hypertension, IPF, or any other chronic lung condition, our Certified Respiratory Educators can help. You can reach us at 1-888-344-LUNG (5864), by email at info@lunghealth.ca., or you can chat live using the “Chat now” button on the bottom right of your screen.

Call for heroes:

Ontario government recruiting extra hands in the fight against COVID-19

The Ministry of Health is looking for additional experienced healthcare providers to help provincial efforts to prevent and control the spread of COVID-19.

Candidates include:

  • Current and former members of Ontario’s regulated health professions and the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers;
  • Physician assistants; and
  • Personal support workers.

Qualified, and interested? Fill out an application here.

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