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1.
Health Policy Open ; 2: 100051, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1454155

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: UC San Diego Health System (UCSDHS) is the largest academic medical center and integrated care network in US-Mexico border area of California contiguous to the Northern Baja region of Mexico. The COVID-19 pandemic compelled several UCSDHS and local communities to create awareness around best methods to promote regional health in this economically, socially, and politically important border area. PURPOSE: To improve understanding of optimal strategies to execute critical care collaborative programs between academic and community health centers facing public health emergencies during the COVID-19 pandemic, based on the experience of UCSDHS and several community hospitals (one US, two Mexican) in the US-Mexico border region. METHODS: After taking several preparatory steps, we developed a two-phase program that included 1) in-person activities to perform needs assessments, hands-on training and education, and morale building and 2) creation of a telemedicine-based (Tele-ICU) service for direct patient management and/or educational coaching experiences.Findings.A clinical and educational program between academic and community border hospitals was feasible, effective, and well received. CONCLUSION: We offer several policy-oriented recommendations steps for academic and community healthcare programs to build educational, collaborative partnerships to address COVID-19 and other cross-cultural, international public health emergencies.

2.
Inform Med Unlocked ; 24: 100618, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253042

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) pandemic has placed unprecedented demands on entire health systems and driven them to their capacity, so that health care professionals have been confronted with the difficult problem of ensuring appropriate staffing and resources to a high number of critically ill patients. In light of such high-demand circumstances, we describe an open web-accessible simulation-based decision support tool for a better use of finite hospital resources. The aim is to explore risk and reward under differing assumptions with a model that diverges from most existing models which focus on epidemic curves and related demand of ward and intensive care beds in general. While maintaining intuitive use, our tool allows randomized "what-if" scenarios which are key for real-time experimentation and analysis of current decisions' down-stream effects on required but finite resources over self-selected time horizons. While the implementation is for COVID-19, the approach generalizes to other diseases and high-demand circumstances.

3.
Ann Glob Health ; 87(1): 1, 2021 01 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1043783

ABSTRACT

Background: UC San Diego Health System (UCSDHS) is an academic medical center and integrated care network in the US-Mexico border area of California contiguous to the Mexican Northern Baja region. The COVID-19 pandemic deeply influenced UCSDHS activities as new public health challenges increasingly related to high population density, cross-border traffic, economic disparities, and interconnectedness between cross-border communities, which accelerated development of clinical collaborations between UCSDHS and several border community hospitals - one in the US, two in Mexico - as high volumes of severely ill patients overwhelmed hospitals. Objective: We describe the development, implementation, feasibility, and acceptance of a novel critical care support program in three community hospitals along the US-Mexico border. Methods: We created and instituted a hybrid critical care program involving: 1) in-person activities to perform needs assessments of equipment and supplies and hands-on training and education, and 2) creation of a telemedicine-based (Tele-ICU) service for direct patient management and/or consultative, education-based experiences. We collected performance metrics surrounding adherence to evidence-based practices and staff perceptions of critical care delivery. Findings: In-person intervention phase identified and filled gaps in equipment and supplies, and Tele-ICU program promoted adherence to evidence-based practices and improved staff confidence in caring for critically ill COVID-19 patients at each hospital. Conclusion: A collaborative, hybrid critical care program across academic and community centers is feasible and effective to address cross-cultural public health emergencies.


Subject(s)
Academic Medical Centers , COVID-19/therapy , Critical Care/methods , Hospitals, Community , Interdisciplinary Communication , Telemedicine , Algorithms , COVID-19/prevention & control , California , Critical Care/organization & administration , Equipment and Supplies, Hospital , Evidence-Based Medicine , Health Personnel/education , Humans , Infection Control/methods , Intensive Care Units , International Cooperation , Mexico , Nursing/methods , SARS-CoV-2 , Self Efficacy
4.
Ann Am Thorac Soc ; 17(11): 1343-1351, 2020 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-922719

ABSTRACT

Background: In March 2020, many elective medical services were canceled in response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. The daily case rate is now declining in many states and there is a need for guidance about the resumption of elective clinical services for patients with lung disease or sleep conditions.Methods: Volunteers were solicited from the Association of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Division Directors and American Thoracic Society. Working groups developed plans by discussion and consensus for resuming elective services in pulmonary and sleep-medicine clinics, pulmonary function testing laboratories, bronchoscopy and procedure suites, polysomnography laboratories, and pulmonary rehabilitation facilities.Results: The community new case rate should be consistently low or have a downward trajectory for at least 14 days before resuming elective clinical services. In addition, institutions should have an operational strategy that consists of patient prioritization, screening, diagnostic testing, physical distancing, infection control, and follow-up surveillance. The goals are to protect patients and staff from exposure to the virus, account for limitations in staff, equipment, and space that are essential for the care of patients with COVID-19, and provide access to care for patients with acute and chronic conditions.Conclusions: Transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a dynamic process and, therefore, it is likely that the prevalence of COVID-19 in the community will wax and wane. This will impact an institution's mitigation needs. Operating procedures should be frequently reassessed and modified as needed. The suggestions provided are those of the authors and do not represent official positions of the Association of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Division Directors or the American Thoracic Society.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Critical Care , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Pulmonary Medicine , Sleep , Advisory Committees , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Consensus , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Humans , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2 , Societies, Medical , United States
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