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April 2, 2020

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Response to The Seattle Times

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Jody Crane, MD, MBA, TeamHealth Chief Medical Officer, submitted the following Letter to the Editor to The Seattle Times in response to a recent article. Please see his letter here:

To the Editors:

TeamHealth is immensely proud of the vital work of our doctors and their heroic efforts on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our doctors and clinicians have a long history of providing care to patients when they need it most, and their work is now more important than ever. We appreciate the opportunity to correct the record on several points related to Dr. Ming Lin following recent reports in this paper.

First, Dr. Lin is still employed by TeamHealth and continues to be paid by our organization, despite incorrect assertions to the contrary. Dr. Lin is one of the more than 16,000 TeamHealth doctors and clinicians providing care across the country, many of whom are also experiencing the nationwide shortage of protective equipment and complexities in mobilizing local resources in the face of this crisis no organization in the country has ever faced. We are maintaining an open dialogue with Dr. Lin and we remain committed to finding him another hospital assignment. The nation needs experienced emergency physicians now, more than ever.

Second, our organization structure is fully consistent with long-established laws and precedent. In fact, our significant investment capital and our national footprint allows us to support our clinicians in ways few organizations can match – particularly during difficult times like these. For example, we are collaborating with organizations nationally to provide consensus guidelines for personal protective equipment based on science from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO). As a result, we saw a clear need to help our providers and clients supplement their PPE when they are in low supply. We have established a mechanism through our leadership structure to track critical supply shortages at all of our facilities leveraging our national presence and relationships to source large numbers of supplemental masks, goggles, and gowns for direct delivery to our hospital teams. We are constantly updating and communicating nationwide best practices to help keep them safe, producing and distributing standardized approaches to flow and patient care to our leaders and clients in the form of best practice toolkits to approach COVID-19 clinical care.

We will continue doing everything we can together with our hospital partners to protect our health care professionals, so they can perform their essential, lifesaving work for patients during this public health crisis – and beyond.

Dr. Jody Crane
Chief Medical Officer