ESOP – the world’s largest multinational oncology pharmacy society,
supporting the interests of cancer patients.
“A blessing in disguise”
The corona epidemic deprives many people of their livelihoods, brings death to those who had not expected it at this point in time, shakes the relationships between people who thought they knew each other beforehand and suddenly appear strange and also exacerbates the political context across national borders away. This makes any small personal renunciation (of human contact either as personal endeavours or part of previously planned, now cancelled congresses and conferences) have a major negative impact on all of us. We, as frontline healthcare professionals, along with others who are responsible for the basic care of the population, tend to feel the stresses of a physical and psychological kind and, like everyone else, ask ourselves how long this will last. At this time, when a medical vaccine is not yet available, the Nobel Peace Prize will be awarded to the UN World Food Program (WFP). The message is clear; an inoculation against death and corruption, against war and damnation, against hunger in the world is honoured. The motto for the future is not everyone for himself, but it is: We all together. We are part of this message. If we have long been calling for overarching measures that should benefit all people, this is our contribution to “we all together”. However we live, which system determines our life, we feel as united people in the exclamation: “We all together”. There are always moments when we feel disappointed that pledging our free time for this common goal seems to not have a major impact for the greater good. Do not despair as joining forces with other like-minded professional will generate enough power to make a change as “We all together”. When will the lesson be learned? For some of us, the ability to communicate in this new virtual environment will never be sharp enough but don’t forget that we are all together in this, and it’s only up to us to make it through. It may not be the right time in our existence but it’s happening now. So common understanding of a goal is important and also the understanding for everyone who wants to contribute to it. “We all together” is not only “all” but also “we” and that relates to the personality of everyone. If both factors are present, it will come to “together”. Do not let yourselves down and reach out to fellow professionals. Don’t settle to act only on your own behalf. Agree on the common sense of activities that are based on personal abilities and see the great opportunity that we all together act as one and are able to win a sustainable world for everyone.
2020 was different than we could have imagined or expected 12 months ago.
As a consequence, the healthcare systems and the entire establishment across the world had been subject to extensive scrutiny on their sustainability.
COVID-19 spread and moved unstoppable across the world. Those countries with cases early in the year had to defend themselves without precise knowledge. Saving people was the only principle that applied. Scenarios of foreclosure, of the relentless struggle of the people in the health sector, were enthusiastically praised by the people all over the world and the title of “key professionals” became the norm.
In parallel, with facts coming to light, fears of prehistoric times events became real. Protective suits and masks became rare, ventilators were too few, and drugs, in particular for anesthesia, became scarce. During the previous 3 months we asked fellow key professionals about their perception of the situation and provided weekly reports on this. These results are available to everyone on our homepage www.esop.eu.
We are still intrigued by the insidiousness of the disease and still see no magic cure on the horizon.
Driven not only by concern but also by economic interests, vaccines are brought to market in a rush and medicinal products are used in individual periods for symptomatic treatment on or off-label.
How will it go on? Will we get on top of it? What consequences will this have on life as we know it and what measures we will have to deal with?
For this and in order to gain more knowledge for the short term and for the future, our team has worked together with the EAHP to create a structured approach to collect this perceptions and facts at wider scale and continue to provide monthly updates.
For this, we will need your support in taking a few minutes each month to fill in this questionnaire. It is anonymous and in order to be able to carry out a correct evaluation, we ask you this time for two things:
- Please take part in it continuously over the next 6 months so that we can collect more precise statistical data and
- Please use the same account / password each time so that an evolution over time is available for you to read.
So far we have received a feedback from fellow professionals from 63 countries. We’ve come a long way some might say, but our work is not complete.
With wider audience and feedback from a larger number of professionals we will have an improved insight on the reality as it is seen by those who, as health professionals, do not cease to let the appearance of the profession be recognised as a calling.
Klaus Meier, President
This team of colleagues from all over the world will accompany the questionnaire campaign over the next 6 months.
We would be delighted if as many people as possible could participate on a permanent basis.
You will have time to answer the questionnaire one week after its publication. Even if you cannot answer everything, it is important to participate.
The questionnaire is available in German, English, French, Spanish, Russian, Italian and Bosnian.
We look forward to your participation.