A Note About the Pandemic

Few disasters stretch around the globe and touch nearly every life in the world. The COVID-19 pandemic is one such event. It slithered into our consciousness in 2020 to profoundly change the way we live our lives. It came and a new paradigm emerged.

Healthcare providers from the beginning through today stoically fight this historic battle. These are the people on the front line who, for the most part, came to this work with a heart for service to others and still carry on the fight. Early in the lockdown a nurse was asked why she continued to work in the face of personal danger, and she responded, “If I don’t care for them, who will?”

The Disaster

When we think of disasters, we usually think of a hurricane, earthquake or tsunami and not a pandemic illness. However, just as those events suddenly appear and wreak havoc, a pandemic illness does the same. It arrives with little warning and no indication of the severity or requirements for recovery. It leaves devastation in its wake.

In 2005, the largest hurricane to hit the United States slammed into the Louisiana/Mississippi Gulf Coast leaving behind massive loss of people and property. A disaster workshop that I attended just days before Katrina made landfall was where I first heard of the formula for recovery planning called the “Times 10 Principle.”

The Response

The formula is simple.

The length of impact x 10 = anticipated length of response.
The response x 10 = anticipated length of recovery.

For example, with Katrina the impact time was that of rescue. So, seven days of rescue becomes 70 days of initial recovery. That becomes 700 days of the next phase of recovery. Based on this formula it was predicted that would take over a decade for full recovery of New Orleans/ Mississippi Gulf Coast area following the hurricane.

In the case of COVID-19, our hope for rescue was the creation of a vaccine that might rein in the virus. One was created approximately 6 months after a near Herculean effort using ongoing viral research.

In this scenario the Times 10 Principle means:
Rescue: 6 months or 24 weeks waiting for a vaccine
Short-term Recovery: 24 weeks x 10= 240 week (4.62 years)

We are still in recovery from the initial COVID-19 pandemic which brought with it worldwide pain and suffering, millions of deaths and economic hardship.

Healthcare providers have survived the initial impact. Now, it is essential to prepare for both short-term and long-term recovery.

In a study of the New Orleans area three years following Katrina, the original projection was substantially lessened due to intentional support by the government and other agencies. In instances of supporting healthcare providers, organizational support was an essential element in speeding up that recovery.

Support aids recovery

Now there is time to stop, breathe and grieve. We experienced so much loss, but we have gained some things as well.

As we stand at a fork in the road, we have a choice.

One path leads to nowhere. It dead ends in “stuck.” Stuck in grief. Stuck in denial. Stuck in doing things the same way, regardless of what we’ve learned. Whatever it may be, it is not good.

The other path moves us forward. It’s a path of transformation as we take what we have and reshape it to adapt to who we need to be now.

Each of us has the power to choose our path. This time of COVID-19 can make you or break you. It is up to the individual to find the courage to follow the unknown path to a new way of thinking and being.

I can help.

I have two programs designed to move you forward, to rediscover why you do all of this in the first place.

Heart to Heart Spiritual Care is an individualized program where I teach and use the Quaker Listening Model to help you tap into your resiliency, to reconnect and rediscover your joy of service.

Reflect, Reconnect, Restore is designed to support your medical staff, those who experienced the overwhelming disaster of the pandemic first: nurses, doctors, and support staff. I want you to have more capable, calm employees who will be satisfied and fulfilled in the work they do.

Much Love,