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1st incision - COVID-19: when demand outstrips supply

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The outbreak of COVID-19 has had a huge impact on the healthcare systems of virtually every country on earth, and the UK has been no exception. A massive mobilisation and reorganisation of the British National Health Service (NHS) to address the challenges we were facing from this new and still poorly understood disease happened in weeks. And in the midst of this mass reorganisation, a lot of thinking had to go into how best to allocate limited resources as we faced a potential overload on the NHS.

Two of our members, Dr Melody Redman and Dr James Haslam, put together a paper looking at these questions and applying a biblical principles to the question of resource allocation. It sounds dry, but it is a matter that could quite literally mean life of death. In this special, extra edition of 1st incision, Steve Fouch has a wide ranging discussion with James and Melody about how we decide who gets what treatment, how COVID-19 has changed the way we think about how we allocate limited resources, and how the public's thinking has changed as a result of the pandemic. We also look at what challenges the future holds.

You can read Melody and James' paper, COVID-19: When demand outstrips supply and other resources on COVID-19 on the CMF Website.


1st incision - series three recap & finale

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In the last episode of season three of 1st incision, we look back at some of the ways Christian Medical Fellowship has been responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, and at some of the resources and support for health professionals that is still available. We're taking a break for the summer, but we'll be back in the autumn with a fresh series of interviews and discussions at the interface of faith, medicine, nursing and midwifery that affect our Christian lives in today's world.

Past episodes of 1st incision are available from our BuzzSprout page, including all 41 episodes of voices from the frontline

You can find out more about our Pastoral Care Programme at cmf.li/PCWP

While COVID1900Prayer has now finished, you can join us every Friday at 5pm for our new video series on Facebook and YouTube -Pause+Pray

And we'd love to hear your feedback and suggestions for the podcast - just email Steve Fouch on 1st.incision@cmf.org.uk

1st incision - Miracles

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The Christian faith stands or falls on the miracle of Jesus' resurrection. But how do we stand in relation to miracles today, especially as health professionals? Do miraculous healings still happen, can we command them, and how we handle situations where our patients claim to have been healed?

David Randall talks with Steve Fouch about how we can engage with the miraculous as Christians and health professionals.

1st incision - Christian nurses ministering globally

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Anne Biro, the Vice-President of Nurses Christian Fellowship International (NCFI) talks with Steve Fouch about how Christian nurses in the UK and in many other nations are connecting together to encourage, teach and train each other during 2020, the International Year of the Nurse and the Midwife (you can read more about this at cmf.li/36c3WUy and about the 200th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale at cmf.li/3bo1NaM.
To find out more about CMF's work with nurses and midwives go to cmf.org.uk/nurses
Please note that this podcast was recorded in late January 2020, before COVID-19 lockdown and social distancing restrictions in the UK and other parts of the world. The NCFI World Congress mentioned in this podcast has since been postponed to 2021. You can read more about the work of NCFI and its rescheduled World Congress, go to ncfi.org
To learn more about the NCFI Next Generation network, see ncfi.org/about-ncfi/next-generation/

1st incision - Medical Mission, 'Tentmaking' and Finishing the Task

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Dr Peter Saunders gives an overview of how God is active across the globe working through healthcare professionals. We ask how medical mission is changing, discuss 'tentmaking', and ask when and where our skills might be useful. Peter diagnoses some barriers to our involvement both in the UK and overseas in a challenging and thought-provoking discussion.

You can read more about the work of Peter's organisation, Christian Medical and Dental Association (ICMDA) at icmda.net

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - the intensivist

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In our fortieth and final voices from the frontline, we talk to Audrey, an intensivist at a Glasgow intensive care unit.

At the sharp end of dealing with COVID-19, she and her team have been working longer hours, with trainees and non-specialists taking on new roles caring for those most seriously affected by the disease. How have she and her team handled the remarkable circumstances in which they have found themselves in the last three months? How has she found Jesus amid this crisis?

This is the last of our special series of voices from the frontline podcasts, but the 1st incision series continues, with a new episode going live next Friday, 29 May.

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - the pharmacist

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Esther is a community-based pharmacist, working closely with general practices. With social distancing and shielding, normal dispensing of medicines has changed considerably. What are the challenges, changes and stresses that pharmacy staff facing during lockdown. How is she finding spiritual support, and how can we pray for Esther and other pharmacists and frontline workers at this time.

Esther is an active member of Christians in Pharmacy - a national network for Christians working in and studying all aspects of pharmacy - check out their Facebook Page and their website for more details and to get in touch

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - the prison doctor

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Rachael works in NHS prison general practice and is medical director of Integritas Healthcare, a Christian faith-inspired NGO working with detainees in the UK and overseas, particularly in the Philippines.

How has COVID-19 affected detainees and prisons in the UK? How is it affecting the delivery of medical care in prisons in the Philippines? And how is she able to bring spiritual support and wholistic care to prisoners?

You can find out more about the work of Integritas at https://integritas-healthcare.squarespace.com

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - Kurdistan, Iraq

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Dr Janan works as a surgeon in Kurdistan, Northern Iraq. His work involves regularly providing surgical care in refugee camps. Northern Iraq has been in lockdown since the first cases of COVID-19 appeared in March, and it seems that the epidemic is under control there. But there is still a real concern that the coronavirus could still break out in the refugee camps, where hand washing and social distancing is not practical. With economic pressures, insecurities and concerns about infection spread, how can we support and pray for Janan and his teams working with refugees in the region?

You can find out more about Dr Janan's organisation, HOME at https://www.homeforhim.org/

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - the paramedic

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Ben is a frontline paramedic, dealing with priority ambulance calls. He also helps lead a Christian fellowship group within the ambulance service, part of the Christian Ambulance Association. There have been increased pressures and opportunities since COVID-19 became a real issue, and it has changed his work, but also the network of support and prayer for frontline crews. How are Christian paramedics and ambulance staff responding in faith and hope to what God is doing in the midst of this pandemic?

You can find out more about the Christian Ambulance Association at https://www.caauk.net/

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - Spain

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Sara is a family medicine doctor in Madrid, Spain. The country has been hit hard, especially in Madrid, and Sara has personal experience of surviving the virus. She has been actively involved in community-based care for COVID-19 patients and has been part of a wider research group looking at treating the disease outside of acute hospitals. How has COVID-19 affected how she prays and cares for her patients?

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - the palliative care specialist

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Alice is a palliative care specialist. In a speciality that has always focused on touch, close personal interaction and open access visiting, COVID-19 and social distancing measures have totally changed the way that she is caring for the dying and the bereaved. It is taking a toll on her team as well as on dying patients and their families. As she goes into these difficult situations, how does her faith equip her to respond in such a time as this?

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - the psychiatrist

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Mental health is a big issue in the current crisis. Today we talk to Hans, a psychiatrist from Switzerland. Uncertainties about the illness, its effects on us and our loved ones, on our livelihoods, on everyday life, can all lead to anxiety and isolation. How can we cope with these strains on our mental health? Are there positive challenges and opportunities to be discovered in these situations?
You can find out more about ICMDA at https://icmda.net and at our COVID-19 blogs at https://cmf.li/COVID19blogs

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - sidelined

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What about those who aren't on the COVID-19 frontline?

Steve works at CMF and is a consultant neuro-rehabilitation specialist. He was due to go into partial retirement just as the lockdown began, but instead found himself at home with no clinical role and watching his colleagues putting their lives on the line to care for patients. How has this affected him? What is he doing now, and how are the non-COVID patients he sees dealing with the situation? It's not just some health workers who feel sidelined. And, in the midst of all of this, what does Steve hear God saying?

You can read Steve's blog Sidelined? Or waiting for God's time to serve?

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - the pain specialist

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Tom is a senior consultant in pain medicine, specialising in portable devices that help manage chronic pain. Although he practised for many years in the US, he is now working in the UK. How is COVID-19 having an impact on his work? How does he see his faith equipping him to meet the needs of his patients?

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - the neonatoligist

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Lee is a neonatologist, working with very premature babies who need intensive support in the first weeks of life. He recently volunteered to work at the London Nightingale Hospital, working with adults on ventilators with COVID-19. He supports more junior staff who are less experienced in nursing ventilated patients. How does he reconcile his Christian faith with the suffering he sees as a result of COVID-19?
NB - this podcast was recorded in late April, before the announcement that the London Nightingale Hospital was to be mothballed.

COVID-19 voices from the frontline - the medical student volunteer

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Rachael is a fourth-year medical student at the University of Manchester. Before the pandemic she was halfway through her neurology placement, but since COVID-19 interrupted her studies, she has been volunteering at the hospital, helping out in practical ways supporting clinical staff. With her studies suspended and the coming months looking really uncertain, how is her faith helping to keep her focused and grounded.

You can read more about CMF's student ministry at https://www.cmf.org.uk/students/


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