Adapting to COVID-19 in the operating room_460x460“The first time I was preparing to operate in one of our dedicated COVID ORs, I wasn’t sure what to expect,” said Joe Drews, MD, MS, a fourth year general surgery resident. To complicate matters, the patient had necrotizing fasciitis, so there wasn’t time to wait for her COVID PCR results. “The entire team—surgeons, anesthesiologists, circulator and scrub tech—huddled at the OR front desk beforehand to discuss how the room would function. Everyone wore full personal protective equipment (PPE) and nothing, including sterile gloves, was in the room itself. Even phones were placed in biohazard bags. Runners brought required supplies from the core, and underneath standard masks, everyone was wearing an N95, filtering out potentially dangerous droplets—and, as a small side benefit, also filtering the odor of a necrotizing infection. The case took longer than usual, but everyone worked together as a team—and most importantly, everything was done as safely as possible.”

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