Focus on Sooners Helping Sooners: Helping those fighting on the front lines

Spring 2020

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Dr. Jabraan Pasha

Dr. Jabraan Pasha

Like their colleagues at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center and OU Medicine, many medical faculty members at OU Physicians-Tulsa are serving on the front lines of the COVID-19 battle. And Sooners Helping Sooners is providing some of their armor.

Sooners Helping Sooners offers opportunities for donors to give to each of OU’s three campuses. In addition to personal emergency needs, gifts to the online giving platform can be designated to purchase personal protective equipment and provide meal allowances for medical personnel members such as Dr. Jabraan Pasha.

Pasha is director of student recruitment for the OU-TU School of Community Medicine and serves as associate program director for internal medicine. He joins other OU faculty members who provide care in one of six OU Physicians medical practices or in area hospitals.

“Almost every hospital is working to conserve PPE,” Pasha said, explaining that there are supply differences from hospital to hospital. Tulsa County currently has the state’s second-highest incidence of COVID-19 cases. “PPE supply is much better than it was six weeks ago,” he said. “However, most hospitals are still using measures to conserve PPE, such as using the same N95 mask all day.”

Gifts to purchase PPE will help OU physicians better protect themselves, said the Tulsa native, who has developed a following on social media for common-sense medical advice during the pandemic. “PPE is designed to be single-use, so there is a risk to reuse. If you are reusing your mask several times a day or for an entire week, its integrity is going to decrease.”

Meals for medical staff and employees were initially purchased through a special medical staff account, and the Maxine and Jack Zarrow Family Foundation made a $5,000 gift to assist with meals.

Pasha said another change during COVID-19 is that OU medical students have been kept off their hospital rotations for the time being.

“It’s tough, but because we have such an urgent issue right now everything has been converted to virtual classroom settings,” he said. In addition to working in local hospitals and clinics, OU-Tulsa faculty members are providing daily online lectures for students. “We know it’s important that we maintain contact with our students, and their education is a priority. We’re doing our best to keep them on track.”