Field Notes, Update

From your couch, from your car, and from your home office

The info hub for the hub of global health

Gotta see a man about a scorpion

Researchers at Fred Hutch just found a new benefit from one of the first deadly predators to walk on land: a protein in scorpion venom that accumulates in joint cartilage and, when linked with steroids, reverses arthritis inflammation. Although the researchers have not tested it on humans yet, they’re hopeful that the discovery will lead to more effective treatment with fewer side effects than current options.

She leads

Meet our latest #ScienceSHEroes: Zambia’s all-woman malaria research team. They each bring different skills to support the same mission: researching, controlling, and ultimately eliminating malaria. And for them, that mission is personal.

The powerhouse team works with PATH’s Malaria Control and Elimination Partnership in Africa (MACEPA) and the Zambian government at the National Malaria Elimination Center.

From your couch

For WA residents without health insurance, a special enrollment period is open now through April 8. Global to Local is helping residents navigate and enroll with over-the-phone help through its Connection Desk.

P.S. After your first few weeks of social distancing, check out Partners In Health’s 10 practices for good mental health to prevent cabin fever.

From your car

These drive-thru spots aren’t for your fast food fix —they’re testing sites for COVID-19.

  • University of Washington (UW) employees and students can visit a drive-thru site to get screened for the flu and COVID-19 at the UW Medical Center-Northwest campus.
  • UW patients can now get tested in their cars at the nearby Outpatient Medical Center.

Reminder: Health care provider referrals and appointments are needed for testing.

From your home office

Nonprofit communications and messaging are tricky during the COVID-19 outbreak. WGHA members share some tips.

  • Minerva Strategies offers advice on how often and what type of info to message.
  • Resource Media provides media and PR tips and shares virtual platforms to stay connected from your home office.


Swine Dining

Field Notes food critics rave about the meals created by Chef Sabrina Brzusek, and not just because she appreciates a good pun. Her catering company, Swine Dining, produces fresh, creative, nutritious, and utterly delicious dishes.

Swine Dining enjoys the rare (ok, the only) WGHA Field Notes Seal of Approval for outstanding food selections, preparation, and presentation. Whether your event calls for a three-course meal or a box lunch, Chef Sabrina offers locally sourced creations you will love.

Swine Dining delivers. There’s never been a better time to enjoy gourmet cuisine at home.

Keep calm and give back

About 60% of the domestic blood supply is collected at mobile drives. And with companies and schools canceling drives, the blood supply at Bloodworks NW is at an emergency low level. If you’re healthy and able, save the life of a trauma victim, surgery patient, or someone living with a blood disorder. Make your appointment ahead of time here.

And if you’re looking for other ways to give back, United Way of King County has you covered with these opportunities to address urgent local needs while heeding public health guidelines.

Wind, water, and workers

Tornadoes. The second-deadliest tornado in Tennessee’s history devastated four central counties when it touched down on March 3. Americares sprang into action, working with local clinics and sending medicine, hygiene kits, and other health supplies.

Torrential rain, flash floods, and landslides. Burundi hasn’t caught a break since December with the rise of extreme weather conditions in the region. UNICEF is on the scene working with families to provide vaccines, clean water, disease prevention, and malnutrition programs.

Paper cuts

A Partners In Health clinic in Sierra Leone launched a major system upgrade—its first electronic medical records system. More than 200 patients visit the clinic each day, and shelves overflowing with paper records were taking up precious time and space. Now, health workers will have more one-on-one time with patients and can quickly review records, track treatments, keep secure notes, and assess disease profiles at the clinic.

People on the move

Around town

As we all adjust to the new reality of the COVID-19 public health emergency, WGHA is also exploring new ways of doing business. We have rescheduled March and April events for late May and early June and are exploring optimal platforms for hosting virtual events. We recognize that the challenges we face in Washington right now are not dissimilar from challenges our member organizations face in coordinating global projects. We are grateful for your patience as we learn new ways of convening and communicating with each other.

Meanwhile, members are offering a few ways you can learn and engage from home.

“Right now, your actions matter. Be kind to one another, care for the people around you and let’s beat this thing together.”

Governor Jay Inslee, on Washington’s COVID-19 outbreak

Do you have a tip for Field Notes? Send it to Jayanna Thompson, jayanna.thompson@wghalliance.org

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