Fresh off of a 24-hour shift at Massachusetts General Hospital, former NFL player and third-year neurosurgery resident Myron Rolle appeared on the ‘Today’ show on Thursday to describe life at the hospital amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Our hospital has been transformed into a COVID-19 welcoming place where every hospital worker has to wear a mask,” he told Al Roker. “Our ICUs have been taxed with oxygen support, ventilator support taking care of these very vulnerable and sick people. Everyone is taking this hospital-wide approach to fighting COVID-19, and we’re trying to adapt and adjust.”
Dr. @MyronRolle is a 3rd year neurosurgeon resident and former NFL player who joins us this morning after working a 24-hour shift on the front lines fighting coronavirus.
“We want to do the best for these very sick people and I think we’re up to the task.” pic.twitter.com/fSrkE9s9Zc
— 3rd Hour of TODAY (@3rdHourTODAY) April 9, 2020
He said that Mass General is “okay for now” in terms of having enough personal protective equipment because staff has been creative about how they use the gear they do have.
“If I’m going into a patient’s room with COVID-19, I may go in one time or maybe twice, gown up, make sure I have the face mask, the protective eye shield, the gowns, gloves, go in, get my exam, be very efficient, get all my tasks done in one time, and get out, so I’m not re-exposing myself over and over again to put myself in harm’s way.
“Our whole staff is taking that approach, including nurses on the front lines. Being smart, being creative, being resourceful, that’s been important for us, and it’s helped us mitigate the issues with resources in Boston and around the country as well.”
Rolle, who chose neurosurgery because he “loved the central nervous system,” has had to adjust to working with patients affected by the virus, but his football background has helped him do so. Rolle was ESPN’s top-ranked recruit during his senior year of high school and played collegiately at Florida State before being drafted by the Tennessee Titans in 2010.
He left the NFL to pursue his dream of a medical career in 2013.
“As a former athlete, I realize that sometimes you have to adjust and adapt in-game, on the fly,” Rolle said. “Things change. Responsibilities change. Now, I’m repurposing myself along with my colleagues to help in this COVID-19 fight.”
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