Yesterday Dr. Phuoc Le, Connie Chan, and Brooke Warren wrote about why the current and ongoing COVID-19 pandemic will be felt most acutely by poor, marginalized, and rural communities – both in the United States and around the world. They wrote:

Exacerbating this reality is the fact that access to health care in rural areas in the U.S. is still widely inadequate. Rural hospitals and clinics are already overburdened at baseline. Pertinent to COVID-19 is the extremely low number of inpatient and ICU beds and ventilators available in rural settings, making it likely that COVID-19 patients will suffer delays in care (see figure below). COVID-19 is, therefore, an acute and chronic crisis. This will widen the existing inequalities that are already prevalent between urban and rural care when it comes to accessing essential resources and priority. One ER provider working in a rural hospital notes, “Even a small number of patients showing up in the emergency room all at once could quickly overwhelm tiny rural hospitals.”

Arc Health is one of the only organizations in the medical employment space focusing solely on mobilizing clinical staffing resources to provide the best care for the most underserved, with a special focus on rural settings.

This is why we want to serve as a connector between clinicians and health care workers interested in serving on the frontlines of the COVID-19 response in rural communities and rural clinics and hospitals that are preparing for the wave of cases that we know are coming.

We are calling on all medical providers and clinicians who want to serve in the response (including but not limited to MDs, Nurse Practitioners, Registered Nurses, Certified Nursing Assistants, Physicians Assistants, and Social and Community Health Workers) to please contact us. We have paid clinical and support positions that need qualified professionals immediately.

Interested in the response? Email us at: ethosbuild@archealthjustice.com.

Also, if you coordinate or lead a rural medical facility, clinic, or hospital and are in need of emergency medical and support staff support in the lead up to your COVID-19 response, please reach out to us as well at: ethosbuild@archealthjustice.com. We would love to be of service and support as you ramp up your response.

We know that this is an unsettling time with a great deal of uncertainty. But, we also know that as Dr. Paul Farmer said in today’s Boston Globe that now is the time for expert mercy. “The most important response? Expert mercy. It stems from an alchemy that mixes compassionate fellow feeling with interventions that save the sick and slow down spread.”

Here’s to working together to bring expert mercy to more people in this time of need.