The Schenectady Gazette published an article on SPHP’s monoclonal antibody infusion clinic on the Samaritan Hospital – Albany Memorial Campus. Melissa Fiorini, M.D., an emergency medicine and critical care physician who oversees the clinic, spoke to the newspaper about the work involved in running the clinic, which has helped more than 450 patients so far in the Capital Region.
From the article:
Dr. Melissa Fiorini, an emergency department doctor who’d been heavily focused on COVID care since the start of the pandemic, has been running the antibody clinic the last two months with a team of five to six nurses.
They’ve begun to catch their breath recently after some very busy days.
“We are not at capacity,” Fiorini said. “We were about to go 12 hours a day and five days a week” when the recent infection surge subsided.
At its height, the situation was bad enough that SPHP moved to set up overflow wards in an old, unused portion of the county-run nursing home, but it hasn’t had to use them.
Nonetheless, the work still carries risk for the clinic’s nurses, who are hands-on with infected and contagious patients.
They’re swathed head-to-toe in personal protective equipment as they work.
“They have to stay in that all day long, which takes some Zen,” Fiorini said.
Fiorini herself is not just care coordinator but gatekeeper, fielding referrals, getting the patients treated, arranging followup care, and even, in the case of homeless patients, connecting them with social workers to arrange temporary lodging after treatment.
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