2020 Was an Amazing Year!

It Was an Amazing Year!

Not always “good” but always amazing for me personally and for Pulse Center for Patient Safety Education & Advocacy.

For the past 20 years Pulse has been about how to be best prepared if you were to become a patient — what you need to know and even how to help your family and friends as their advocate or care partner. Even before the pandemic, Pulse started the TakeCHARGE Campaign: 5 Steps to Safer Healthcare

Starting in January 2020 a team met every week until the campaign’s kickoff in March, and then throughout the campaign we informed people across the country about the 5 Steps, which by late spring became a full-blown campaign with presentations, social media and even the Joint Commission sharing the information with their staff and now the public. 

All 5 Steps, including handwashing and choosing a healthcare proxy in case you can’t speak for yourself (and end up on a ventilator) became very relevant during the pandemic. We were again, at Pulse, ahead of the curve!  David Fielding has helped lead this effort with a great team including Mary Redler, David Halperin, Beverly James and very enthusiastic Public Health Interns from Hofstra University. We are ready to start again for 2021!

With Zoom a daily routine, there are more people to meet and our monthly PPS meetings, People for Patient Safety, have become Zoom meetings. The planning team has met weekly, and Kathy Pendelton from Florida, Cathy Bond from Georgia, David Fielding and myself from New York all meet weekly to get some of the country’s best speakers for the PPS program on the second Monday of each month. From 2014 until COVID-19 struck we met at a diner, and though we learned from each other in small groups, our current quarantining has paradoxically helped us grow, meet more people and expand our programs!

We spent the PACC program, Patient Activation through Community Conversations, learning from each other and though that continued through the campaign, we will be bringing online PACCs back in 2021 to be held the first Wednesday evening of each month at 7:30 PM Eastern Time starting in January.  It’s a great opportunity for patient advocates to learn about patients’ experiences and share what has worked for them as advocates and patients!

I am lining up Zoom presentations for TakeCHARGE and hope to find Ambassadors to help in the community, thanks to a grant from the Long Island Unitarian Universalist Fund and the Long Island Community Foundation.  

Pulse’s advocacy training is set to become virtual in 2021. If you would like to be part of our team, please let me know.  We will find a place for you that matters to you.

2020 delivered some very difficult times as a nation and among the families of those who have been sick and even passed away because of COVID-19 and other reasons.  Our nation, our homes and many loved ones felt stress, sadness and suffering.  It has without doubt been a difficult year, but please know that there is one thing you can count on, and that is Pulse being here for you, to help you through your difficult times with our team of professionals in support.

Thank you, and my hope for you is a 2021 that will be better than ever.

Ilene Corina, BCPA President, Pulse Center for Patient Safety Education & Advocacy

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