Dear Colleagues and Friends:
The ongoing devastation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic is almost unthinkable. The impact on individual health, lives, and livelihoods is both humbling and terrifying. We are all affected, each of us in different ways. Many of us will be helping loved ones and family members recover from COVID-19 and the resulting infections. Many others are battling the viral infection itself. Yet others are suffering the anxiety and stress of being in lockdown as the pandemic spreads in our midst. All of us are, and will be, suffering from the economic side effects of this pandemic.
This is an unprecedented and painful time, made all the worse by the fact that we do not know when the pandemic will subside and come under control. As we move through this threat, please know that you are not alone. As a community of reproductive care professionals, ASRM is focusing its efforts on how to best help quicken the resolution of this pandemic, so that our members can get back to serving their patients as quickly and as safely as possible. These efforts focus on helping to bend the viral transmission curve to assist in ensuring our nation’s hospitals and ICUs are not overwhelmed and have the necessary equipment and personnel, and on helping to ensure that our services to you continue uninterrupted.
And yet, during these uncertain times, there is much to be positive about. The many acts of heroism and dedication by countless health professionals on the front lines, the extraordinary acts of selfless sacrifice by numerous volunteers, and the ability of our diverse communities to come together to combat this scourge, have been both inspiring and remarkable.
We have been busy doing what ASRM does best -- providing information, education and advocacy for our members. ASRM issued its first statement on dealing with COVID-19 on February 17th, and on March 17th, we released our first set of recommendations for patient management, a document we have already updated and will be regularly updating for the duration of the pandemic.
In just the few days since we announced that we would make available our certificate courses free of charge, more than 650 of you have taken us up on this offer!
Our government affairs team has been busy ensuring policy makers know what our members need and trying to help make sure you can access those programs.
And we have been communicating with the leaders of our affiliate societies and groups to help identify what support and programs they can offer to you and your staff.
Without question, the greatest asset of the ASRM is you, each and every one of our members, and the extraordinary expertise and commitment you bring to the care of your patients and their families. We are seeing a great outpouring of support for one another. Our online communities are humming with members helping members, with information, with advice, with support, with just being there for one another.
Over the coming days and weeks, we will be identifying different ways to share more of this with you, including web postings, email blasts, webinars, and more opportunities for online learning.
The ASRM and our wonderful staff are working hard to ensure that our community of reproductive medicine professionals emerges from this challenge ready to hit the ground running when our return to full patient care is possible. Together, we will overcome what might appear now to be an insurmountable challenge and arrive at the other side, stronger as an organization and stronger as professionals, for the benefit of the patients and the communities we care so deeply about.
Together, we must stay focused on fighting the present viral threat. We can do this in numerous ways - by volunteering, donating needed equipment, reassuring and educating our patients through telehealth, helping to "bend the curve", staying safe, and ensuring both our own emotional and physical well-being, as well as that of our patients, staff, colleagues, and friends and family. We will come out of the current test stronger, as a community of professionals, as a nation, and as a global society.