The evidence and warnings from our public health officials are clear: To prevent the novel coronavirus COVID-19 from overwhelming our healthcare system and leading to a lot of unnecessary suffering and death, immediate action is required from every one of us.
Yesterday, BC's Chief Public Health Officer banned all gatherings of over 50 people and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau restricted travel to Canada to Canadian residents and Americans. Municipalities are also starting to close non-essential public facilities. More measures are expected today and throughout the week.
For our own part, the BCHA's Board of Directors is taking steps to protect our members and the broader community. Specifically, we are suspending all in person meetings and encouraging online connections until public health officials deem the risk to be over.
This includes the regular Sunday meetings held in Vancouver and upcoming board meetings. The Board will also be reviewing options for the Annual General Meeting, tentatively scheduled for mid-May and encouraging our partners and affiliates to also take similar precautions.
Finally, if you haven't already, make sure to review the resources being put together by experts at the provincial and federal governments.
- HealthLinkBC information and links to resources
- BC Centre for Disease Control information
- Government of Canada information
I realize these are extreme circumstances but it's worthwhile to revisit the fundamentals of Humanism that bring us all together. Here are also a few articles I've been reading about ethics in a time of pandemic that might be helpful for you.
- COVID-19 outbreak in Canada calls for an ethics of collective care by Jon Parsons
- Ethics Resources on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) from The Hastings Center
- COVID-19 Ethics Resource Center from the American Medical Association's Journal of Ethics