Portuguese people have an old saying “when a door closes, a window opens”. COVID-19 pandemic is no exception. Today, after several months of this pandemic it’s clear that we cannot go back to “normal”; instead, our obligation is clear: to disrupt the “as is”! Solid-organ transplantation is no exception.
The development of a Contingency Plan is an imperative
The unparalleled abundance of spare ventilators is a window of opportunity “provided by COVID-19” to strengthen solid organs donation and transplantation, an opportunity that must be used to propel transplantation. Furthermore, we are ethically obliged to use them properly and save an unprecedented number of lives. To do so, Healthcare Institutions must analyze the available resources to maximize opportunities and consciously in a responsible way to minimize risk… or, if you prefer, prepare a thorough Contingency Plan.
The adoption of the “WHO guidance for contingency planning” requires a reflection centered in 3 main areas:
- Identification and regular monitoring of risks and vulnerabilities to donation and transplantation activities;
- Risk Mitigation, including the actions to be implemented to reduce the severity, probability of occurrence of, or exposure to, a given hazard and therefore lessen its impact;
- Preparedness, including all actions required to increase knowledge and capacity to anticipate, respond to and recover from the impact of one or more events.
At the end of this process, we obtain “Readiness”, the outcome of planning, allocation of resources, training, exercising, and organizing to build, sustain, and improve operational capabilities based on risk assessments.
This readiness must also consider system driven answers, to ensure attaining Resiliency and closing the circle. COVID-19 has emphasized the importance of interoperability not only to support patients but also to ensure the coordination between professionals in different healthcare institutions. But, more significantly it has highlighted the need to ensure a multinational approach to healthcare challenges; an international common outlook, instead of an approach by healthcare institution, region, or nation will propel the most effective and for sure more cost-efficient solution.
How can TransplantHUB help in a post COVID-19 contingency plan?
We are prepared to support healthcare efforts, around the world, public or private, with TransplantHUB, our software to manage the donation and transplantation workflows. Its management support, process reach and simplification, robustness, integration capabilities, and flexibility will provide a secure basis to ensure countries the confidence to scale their operations. To find out more how we, at TransplantHUB, can help, please contact us and we’ll be more than happy to arrange a meeting and demonstrate it further.