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Utah healthcare workers go to NYC to help treat coronavirus patients

Posted at 8:57 PM, Apr 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-11 23:00:48-04

SALT LAKE CITY — Intermountain Healthcare is sending two teams of 50 healthcare workers to New York to help combat the COVID-19 pandemic.

“You know, I will call it kind of the heart of a hero,” said Paul Krakovitz, the chief medical officer for specialty-based care at Intermountain. "People are willing to take their expertise and knowledge and do whatever they can to help.”

One doctor going is Dixie Harris, a pulmonologist with Intermountain.

“We’re rested, healthy, we’ve all been screened," she said. "They [medical staff in New York] have been working 24/7 for days, so they’re tired, their immune systems are down, so this is a good time for us to go help them.”

Intermountain says now is a good time to be able to send these healthcare workers because they will learn valuable information about fighting the virus and they can then bring that experience back with them to Utah to fight the continuing spread.

"It’s an inner calling, I think. When you go to medical school or when you go to nursing school, you feel this need to go where you’re needed," Harris said. "I just know the team we’re bringing, we just feel we need to go help right now and right now. Intermountain can spare us.”

The first team will leave on Tuesday to New York City, where they will work at two hospitals there.