Editor’s note: Visit the official Western COVID-19 website for the latest campus updates.
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In a time of isolation, one Western Medical student is helping increase connections for those on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.
First-year Medical student Max Stone recently launched a web resource for the North York General Hospital’s (NYGH) Emergency Department, providing updates, messages and information to physicians and health workers.
Affiliated with the University of Toronto, NYGH serves more than 400,000 people in north central Toronto and southern York Region. Its Charlotte & Lewis Steinberg Emergencyis one of the busiest in Canada, with more than 113,000 patients annually.
Stone responded to a request for help from Dr. Meeta Patel at NYGH, who was looking to create a website for emergency staff to centralize resources and keep the team connected. Stone worked for about a week to get the framework for the site up and running, under the guidance of Patel and Dr. Sidney Chiu.
“I am thankful for the opportunity to help out in a small way and provide them with a resource to share information with one another, keeping their team connected and collaborative in a time when the entire planet is feeling isolated and lonely,” he said. “I am glad that I could help the team keep each other and their patients safe.”
The medical student was motivated by his peers across the country who are organizing a number of student-led initiatives. Living with his parents and sister, he decided to limit contact with other families, but still wanted to contribute from home.
“My classmates and colleagues have shown so much leadership in response to COVID-19. It makes me feel optimistic about the future of health care in this country,” he said.
As a future physician, Stone is also inspired by the efforts of health-care workers.
“This story isn’t really about me. It is about the health-care workers at North York General and across the world who are on the frontlines fighting COVID-19,” he said.
“They have family, friends and lives outside the hospital and, just like everyone else, they aren’t sure what to expect over the next little while. We owe them more gratitude than we can provide for their courage and hard work during this unprecedented time.”