Volume 32 | Issue 2

Healthcare worker risk of contracting COVID-19 after vaccination
by Ryan J Fink, MD and Chris Varani, MD

We previously reviewed data related to the risk of healthcare workers contracting COVID-19 in December of 2020 (Interchange:31[3]). One study of front-line healthcare workers demonstrated a 4% positive COVID-19 testing rate compared to just 0.33% for the general population. In a survey study of 105 anesthesiologists and intensivists at a New York City hospital, 58% reported a workplace exposure (mostly related to airway management), 26% of those reported COVID-19-like symptoms after that exposure, but only 12% of providers tested were found to be positive for antibodies.

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How Do We “Practice” Medicine?
by Louanne M. Carabini, MD, MA, FASA

According to Oxford Languages, to “practice” means to pursue a professional activity or exercise a skill regularly and routinely to improve proficiency. I am an anesthesiologist who “practices” critical care medicine and the residency program director for more than seventy-six residents in a large training program. I am also a mother, a wife, sister, and daughter; and I have to practice being human every day. We are all human, and we deserve more competence and proficiency as we interact together. Often, my biggest challenge that demands practice for proficiency is the transition from work to life.

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Finding Purpose in Our Work
by Shahla Siddiqui, MBBS, MSc (Medical ethics), FCCM

To at least some degree, we all entered medicine for altruistic reasons: helping others, finding meaning in providing comfort and care, and saving lives. We in critical care are especially driven to offer management of life-threatening disease states as well as solace and comfort to critically ill patients. This aspect has been highlighted in striking detail during the pandemic where, despite the grueling physical demands of working in ICUs during this time, the discomfort of PPE, and the trauma of watching so many people die and so many families suffer, we still find joy and reward in the lives we save and the families whose lives we touch by our compassion.

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