PCOM students and faculty normally wear masks, gloves and gowns during medical scenarios in the Simulation Center.
Gloves, gowns, shoe covers and N95 masks are typically used to simulate medical situations and provide protection in the anatomy lab for PCOM South Georgia students. Last week, these supplies were shipped out to Colquitt Regional Medical Center (CRMC) and Phoebe Putney in an effort to protect local healthcare workers.
“The health of our communities that we serve is the reason we’re here,” said Joanne Jones, campus officer of PCOM South Georgia. “It’s not just about educating students in this area. It’s about supporting the communities that these students will train and practice in. We should be the example of how to give back to a community that has been so supportive of us.”
On Thursday, March 26, PCOM President and Chief Executive Officer Jay Feldstein, DO ’83, reached out to Phoebe Putney to offer a donation of personal protective equipment (PPE). That’s when the work began to gather up any materials that could be donated to local hospitals fighting COVID-19.
Todd Presley, PCOM South Georgia operations manager and Sheila Chapel, Simulation Center Manager, assisted Jones with gathering and shipping the PPE.
“It’s going to help them tremendously,” Presley said. “They acted like it was gold and that it was greatly appreciated and would be used. I just wish we had more to donate to them.”
Nearly 125 N95 masks, 800 gloves and hundreds of shoe covers were donated from the campus’ Simulation Center and anatomy lab.
“The decision to donate was an easy one,” said Chapel. “The healthcare facilities in our community were needing help to keep up with the demand for PPE for those working on the front lines taking care of patients affected by this illness. The safety of those healthcare workers is paramount at this time.”
Protecting healthcare workers on the front line became top priority for the faculty and staff who are well aware of how COVID-19 is affecting southwest Georgia. As of April 2, Albany has the second-highest number of cases per capita: 13 cases per 10,000 people according to Scientific American.
“Albany is such a hot zone,” Jones said. “We have students that rotate in that area, and we want to support the physicians there. PCOM South Georgia is geared toward training doctors to stay in rural communities. This is our small way of helping this region as we train our students to become physicians.”
Chapel echoes the sentiment of support.
“Our local healthcare facilities are wonderful partners of PCOM South Georgia,” she said. “They are instrumental to the education of our medical students allowing clinical rotations during their third and fourth years. We are all working through these challenging times together. The whole community benefits when we support each other during times of need.”
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) extended its commitment to the Southeast by establishing PCOM South Georgia, an additional teaching location in Moultrie, Georgia, which offers a full four-year medical program leading to the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree. In addition, a Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences will be offered beginning in August 2020. PCOM is a private, not-for-profit institution which trains professionals in the health and behavioral sciences fields. Joining PCOM Georgia in Suwanee in helping to meet the healthcare needs of the state, PCOM South Georgia focuses on educating physicians for the South Georgia region. The medical campus, which welcomed its inaugural class of medical students on August 12, 2019, has received accreditation from the American Osteopathic Association's Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation. For more information, visit pcom.edu/southgeorgia or call 229-668-3110.
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