With donations, applauses, food and gifts, the people of Monaco have been showing their appreciation to the Princess Grace Hospital staff, Monaco’s frontline in the battle against COVID-19. Medical staff around the world are working in difficult conditions, exposing themselves everyday to a virus that has put the world on pause. All the hard work and risk has not gone unnoticed in Monaco, where people are showing their gratitude in any way they can.
Applauses, children’s drawing and big donations
Every evening at 8 pm, one minute of applause resonates throughout the Principality.
And that daily ritual isn’t the only way Monegasques are showing their appreciation for workers at the Princess Grace Hospital Centre. Drawings, made by the children of the Principality, line the walls of the hospital on the way to the locker room. Donations have been pouring in from individuals and associations, including a 150,000 euro donation by a wealthy CHPG patient. Much of the money will be going toward ventilators.
Much-needed supplies and VIP treatment
The Monegasque Bank Company supplied 800 litres of hand-sanitizer and 1,000 masks to the hospital. Decathlon has supplied the CHPG with ten snorkelling masks. One of the anesthesiologists is in the process of manufacturing a valve to adapt them into more comfortable oxygen masks for patients. Monaco Parking freed up 300 places for medical staff to park for free. Carrefour grocery store has a priority queue and a dedicated cash register for staff members to do their shopping.
Tablets so patients can video call loved ones
At the end of March, Benoîte de Sevelinges, director of the CHPG, asked Monaco Telecom and Telis for help in finding Apple products. The two Monegasque companies gathered 77 tablets in four days and were kind enough to offer them to the hospital. Now COVID-19 patients, isolated in their rooms, can regularly communicate with their relatives and caregivers. Staff can now converse with patients for follow-ups without having to enter the room, which allows doctors and nurses to be less exposed to the virus.
Video calls bring a lot of humanity, more comfort and less stress for patients. A medical follow-up by video is also useful for discussions with a psychologist or for breathing exercises with a physiotherapist. Philosophical Meetings and the MonteCarlo Opera have also provided content for conferences and shows, which keep patients entertained.
Staff urge population to come in for emergencies
Since the pandemic began, the CHPG’s emergency department has seen an almost 70% decrease in patients. Medical staff agree that the fear of contamination has kept patients away from the emergency rooms. Barriers, masks, social distancing and anti-bacterial cream is not enough to quell the fear of catching the coronavirus at the hospital. However, according to experts, avoiding emergency rooms may be a mistake for certain patients. The CHPG is urging the public not to hesitate to come for treatment. Patients can always call before coming in and staff will let them know what they should do. Phone consultations are also available for follow-ups to prevent the spread of the virus.