Deepa Galaiya (2011 Fellow) is the neurotology and skull base surgery fellow in the Department of Otolaryngology at Johns Hopkins, where she will be starting a faculty position in June of 2020. Her department is currently seeing only urgent and emergent cases for otolaryngology, which includes patients with cancer or patients who will have permanent impending neurologic consequences if treatment is not started immediately.
"Otolaryngologists have been at the front lines internationally since so many of our procedures and patient encounters will aerosolize the virus from the nose and mouth. For now, the vast majority of our patients have been moved to telemedicine visits, and all elective surgeries have been cancelled. While that is a viable solution in the short term, I worry about the long-term consequences of leaving 'elective' conditions untreated for months on end," Deepa explained. "I fear we will have a surge of patients with complications from untreated medical conditions that may coincide with the surge of COVID-19 patients."
Deepa is proud of Johns Hopkins and the state of Maryland. "Johns Hopkins as an institution has gone to amazing lengths to prepare the hospital system, and the research out of the school of public health has been influential in shaping state and national policy responses to the pandemic. Maryland has acted rapidly under bipartisan leadership to prevent the spread of the virus and has certainly been a leader in the DC/MD/VA region and the country," Deepa, who is the child of immigrants from India, noted.