Planning and hope

My first message to you with this blog is that I hope you are finding ways to stay well in body, mind and spirit through these uncertain times. For our learners, staff and faculty, know that our college is here to support you as you adjust to learning and working in different ways.

I want to share a few articles I’ve read in the past few days that I found helpful. I think they are valuable reminders of our shared purpose regarding COVID-19, as well as the amazing resilience and strength of the human spirit. Perhaps these resources will provide you with some additional knowledge, strengthened resolve, and some peace from knowing what you can and are contributing to this extraordinary global effort to fight the spread of COVID-19.

I’m impressed by those individuals advocating loudly for the public health measures that are absolutely needed to get us through this. This week I was pleased to see a group of medical leaders come forward with all of the right points about public health measures through this opinion piece in the New York Times. An emergency doctor in Ontario appealed to people who still believe their lives should go on as usual through this CBC story. And of course, the many stories of people safely singing from their balconies to cheer on and thank our healthcare workers, and provide cheer to one another.

All kinds of information is coming out around efforts at predicting and planning for how we will be impacted in Saskatchewan by the pandemic. Minister of Health Jim Reiter made what I consider a very correct statement when he said he wanted to have the worst-case scenario.

As the saying goes, “Hope for the best, plan for the worst,” (from author Lee Child). So absolutely we must be planning for the worst-case scenario to do our best to manage this evolving pandemic. Saskatchewan has brilliant population health experts and scientists working on solutions and excellent physicians leading teams in providing the best care possible. Planning and preparing are critical and our province is doing that.

Now to the other part of that quote, I turn your thoughts to hope, and another article about two Italian physicians I read in the Globe and Mail recently. They are in the thick of the world’s most intense COVID-19 battles. While the article outlines dire circumstances and realities, it also reminds us of the strength and resilience of the human spirit I referenced earlier. Hope is the fuel that will keep us going so we can each continue to do our part in this crisis.

What I am seeing around me gives me hope. Amazing efforts in planning, care and research. And I see every day how our team at the CoM and others are connecting virtually to support one another through these times. I see you reaching out with empathy, humour, offers of support. We need to keep doing this.

One other thing I am reading right now is excellent science-based information about COVID-19 from our own experts, and others. It’s being organized and compiled by our Division of Continuing Medical Education and you can find it on their web page: CME | COVID-19: Resource Center.

Finally, I will say it again: please do all in your power to stay well. It is the greatest help we can give healthcare workers and everyone we care about at this time.