During this unprecedented surge of COVID-induced lung injury, many critical care providers have been brushing up on their ARDS management. But one physician is being be a little more proactive. In recent weeks, Pulmonary/Critical Care fellow, Al Veelus, has taken to proning all hospitalized patients – not just those in the ICU with hypoxia, but all patients on the floors, all consults, and all obs patients, especially those without any pulmonary problems.
“We all know about proning the sickest patients”, said Veelus, “But why stop there?”
Initially ridiculed for his low threshold to flip the script, Veelus is now gaining hospital-wide recognition for his early intervention. He’s been known to flip cellulitis patients, invert nose bleeders, and flatten even the healthiest of DVT cases. For pregnant patients, he employs a rotisserie-style, continuous rotation to ensure even proning on all sides. He even sent an enterprise-wide email recommending that janitors and cafeteria workers self-prone while on breaks.
One nurse reported that Veelus even proned a patient who was dressed and standing in his room waiting for discharge. “I had never seen anything like it!” she said, “The man’s a human spatula!”
Widely praised for his stewardship in saving PPE, Veelus downplays his role. “I’m just fighting back against the disease”, he states, “After all, you can’t spell ‘stewardship’ without ARDS.”