|LETTERS TO EDITOR
|Year : 2020 | Volume
| Issue : 2 | Page : 156-157
Hearing the unsaid – “Pravara sign language” for COVID-19 intensive care unit
Akshaya N Shetti, Bhavika Singla, Bhakti Bhandari, Katyayani P Gurav
Department of Anesthesiology, Rural Medical College, PIMS, Rahata, Maharashtra, India
|Date of Submission||06-May-2020|
|Date of Decision||11-May-2020|
|Date of Acceptance||13-May-2020|
|Date of Web Publication||19-Sep-2020|
Dr. Akshaya N Shetti
Department of Anesthesiology, Rural Medical College, PIMS, Loni, Taluka, Rahata - 413 736, Maharashtra
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
|How to cite this article:|
Shetti AN, Singla B, Bhandari B, Gurav KP. Hearing the unsaid – “Pravara sign language” for COVID-19 intensive care unit. Indian Anaesth Forum 2020;21:156-7
|How to cite this URL:|
Shetti AN, Singla B, Bhandari B, Gurav KP. Hearing the unsaid – “Pravara sign language” for COVID-19 intensive care unit. Indian Anaesth Forum [serial online] 2020 [cited 2023 Jun 7];21:156-7. Available from: http://www.theiaforum.org/text.asp?2020/21/2/156/295386
Personal protective equipment (PPE) has been the buzzword across the globe during this pandemic of COVID-19. Various guidelines and protocols have emphasized on the importance of PPEs while managing COVID patients to reduce the exposure risk., A PPE kit usually comprises of a coverall or gown, a face shield, a mask, strike a goggles, gloves, shoe covers, and/or a surgical hood. Donning the PPE not only makes the identification of the person difficult, but also makes it hard for the health-care providers to speak and hear. The lack of effective communication might lead to misdiagnosis and misinterpretation of instructions, further leading to a compromised patient care.
Various alternative communication options, involving latest technology, are available in developed countries. The scenario in a developing country is, unfortunately, not the same. Considering the limited funds and resources, there is a need to develop cost-effective and relatively simple method of communication among nurses and doctors working in a COVID-19 intensive care unit (ICU) in a developing country. For the easy identification of the health-care provider, one can make use of the white strap on the face shield on which the name and role of the individual can be displayed. We also propose the use of sign language as one such communication tool to be utilized by health-care providers for better flow of information as well as patient care. Few of the crucial lifesaving procedures and treatments undertaken in an ICU while treating COVID patients have been illustrated with the signs developed by us at our rural tertiary care hospital [Figure 1].
|Figure 1: Pravara sign language for communication in COVID-19 intensive care unit|
Click here to view
As per the institutional protocols, four teams are prepared to serve the COVID isolation hospital. We are training the individuals of each team separately and by maintaining social distancing for donning and doffing PPE. During the PPE training, we have incorporated the sign language training for all the health-care providers who are expected to work in the critical care area. Once the training is completed, each participant is randomly asked questions, and clearance for working is not given in case if any one fails. The sign language is prepared in such a way that it is easily understood. The person who fails the test is re-trained till the goal is achieved. Handouts and soft copies are provided to the participants to practice the same in the house as and when time permits. There is a separate poster of size 21” × 21” made available in the ICU area for the reference in case anyone forgets.
Further validation and implementation of this standardized communication tool using sign language may help in overcoming the communication barrier in a COVID-19 critical care unit.
Financial support and sponsorship
Conflicts of interest
There are no conflict of interest.
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