A Day in the Emergency Department

with PA Stacy Kovacs

Stacy Kovacs is one of the most high-energy people, ever, anywhere. She leads Fogo Azul, the all-women’s Brazilian percussion corps that performs all over New York and internationally, at parades and public events. Her day job is a “PA,” a physicians’ assistant in one of the New York’s largest hospitals.

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Stacy Kovacs leading Fogo Azul

My assignment is to cover eight patients in the ED.

All my patients are Covid+, which means they tested positive. In fact, I don’t think anyone in the ED is not Covid+.

Keep them alive!

My other patients are in their 60s with NRBs (non-rebreather face masks) at full oxygen level — as much oxygen as they can get. They are now considered “stable,” which one month ago would have been criteria for admission to the ICU. Not any more. 15 LPM (liters per minute) on NRB is the new stable. Fine. Our job to watch them, wait for a change, or wait for them to get a bed upstairs. Our mantra is: “keep them alive, keep them alive.”

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Patient on Bipap machine

Please stay home and just chill.

I would do anything right now to stay home and chill. I envy all of you.”

Written by

My career is designing and writing about design. Here, I can write about lots of things. My short fiction attempts to capture and evoke past moments in time.

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