On Your Health

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An INTEGRIS Pulmonary and Critical Care Physician Discusses COVID-19

 Meet David Boggs, M.D., a pulmonary and critical care physician at INTEGRIS Baptist Medical Center. Working in an intensive care unit dedicated for respiratory illness, he is quite literally on the frontlines of the COVID-19 crisis.

The 25-year veteran is an expert in lung disease and caring for patients suffering from Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome known as ARDS, the condition blamed for taking the lives of many COVID-19 patients.

Although it changes daily, he says over 75% of the coronavirus patients in the INTEGRIS Baptist ICU are currently on ventilators.

Boggs understands he and his team are playing an important role in this pandemic. “I feel like my particular specialty is leading the charge in this battle by caring for these very complex patients. We are blessed to be able to offer this expert specialty care to Oklahomans in need.”

While he is confident in the quality of care INTEGRIS can provide, he admits there is uncertainty in the unknown as we anxiously await an expected influx of patients. “I think the stress of not knowing the trajectory of this disease and whether or not we will have enough resources to meet the needs of our patients is weighing heavily on all of us.”

Boggs continues, “At the present time we have the appropriate personal protective equipment but there is a concern that we could be in short supply when and if a surge of critically ill patients occurs.”

 There is also concern for his own health, the health of his co-workers and the health of his family. “I am not scared, but I am concerned for the safety and well-being of our community and all of the caregivers that may encounter this disease,” Boggs reveals. “I consider myself to be in good health, but I do think about what would happen if I were to become critically ill. I gain comfort in the fact that I have the utmost faith and confidence in the caregivers I work with and I know what great care they take of their patients.”

He adds, “Of course the last thing I want to do is infect a family member, or anyone for that matter. I have implemented a very rigorous routine when returning home in hopes of reducing the likelihood of transmission to my loved ones.”

He encourages us all to be responsible in our actions. “I would like to thank all of the people in the community who are taking this pandemic seriously and doing their part by complying with the recommendations for social distancing and staying safer at home. You are saving lives!”

He states, as difficult as this is or as difficult as it may become, we will get through this. He says he works with some of the most committed, dedicated, resilient and honorable professionals in the state who are here for the long haul.

“We have the best nurses, respiratory therapists and physicians. They work hard. They stay late. They give their all every single day. And they are all working towards a singular goal. To save as many lives as possible during this ordeal.” 
Boggs concludes, “There is no greater reward than using your education and skills to care for a critically ill patient who survives their illness and returns to an excellent quality of life.”



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