Ear Shot

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University of Rochester Medical Center

Bob Filmore has late stage Alzheimer's disease. 

He was admitted to Strong Memorial Hospital to be treated for an infection. That can be stressful under normal circumstances, but in this time of coronavirus when visitors aren't allowed, everyone the patient encounters is considered a stranger wearing a mask and covered in protective gear.

Kat Schwarz

Kat Schwarz and Clayton Eddy are planning on getting married on Dec. 12.

“Having the wedding in December does make me hopeful that we will actually be able to have the wedding," Schwarz said.

The Rochester couple already put money down on the venue and the photographer. Schwarz found a dress she likes.

But it's too early to know what life will look like in eight months.

“It’s almost like 'Love in the time of Cholera,' " said Schwarz, referencing the Gabriel García Márquez novel. "Married in the time of COVID.”

Rochester Regional Health

Clif Genge does not intubate a patient or check their vital signs. He provides another kind of lifeline at Rochester General Hospital.

Genge is a palliative care chaplain.  He gives spiritual and emotional support to seriously ill patients and their families.

If necessary, he is by their side as they transition to death.

"We're always a source of peace and hope and encouragement, but even more so now because we're doing double duty," Genge said. "We're doing our own role, but we're also passing along the messages from family, as well."

freeimages.com/ Julia Freeman-Woolpert

Imagine you’re in a busy hospital to be treated for COVID-19. The medical staff is overwhelmed, and things are happening quickly.

You are deaf or hard of hearing, there is no interpreter on hand, and your nurse or doctor is wearing a mask, so you can’t read their lips.

“You don’t want to be nodding your head about whether or not you have any allergies or something like that when you really don’t understand. You don’t want to be playing that guessing game,” said Gerard Buckley, president of RIT’s National Technical Institute for the Deaf.

Rochester Regional Health

Melissa Bronstein is the system director for infection prevention at Rochester Regional Health.

She oversees the team in charge of keeping patients, staff, and visitors free from infections that may be caused in hospitals or other health care settings.

Under normal circumstances, that's a big job. But during a global pandemic?

Rochester Regional Health

Doctors, nurses, and respiratory therapists are all on the front lines treating patients who have the new coronavirus. 

But other hospital workers are also playing critical roles.

At Rochester General Hospital, Scott Sleeper and Vic Zeno are the environmental services operations managers.

"(We) basically ensure the hospital has all the resources to maintain a clean and safe environment for all that enter the building," Zeno said.

WXXI News and Step by Step Developmental Services


India Hedman’s daughter, Kaia, is sleeping. It’s Wednesday afternoon, and the 14-month-old is down for a nap.

Hedman picks her up out of her crib. Kaia’s head lolls against her mom’s shoulder. Her eyes stay closed.

“When she sleeps, she sleeps,” Hedman said.

In the latest WXXI Business Report, you'll get some details on how Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul is trying to help state agencies plan for getting the state’s economy back on track, after the coronavirus pandemic eases.

Plus, a major grant for NextCorps, a local business incubator organization, will help business start-ups around the state develop clean technology for things like renewable energy. 

Also, virtual annual meetings for companies will become a thing. 

Dr. Katie Harmer

On Wednesday, 99 members from the University of Rochester School of Medicine's class of 2020 took the physician's oath in a virtual ceremony.

It wasn't the graduation ceremony they would have expected even a few months ago; but that was before a coronavirus pandemic swept across the globe.

"I've never felt that duty so strongly as I feel it right now at this time of great need for our community," said Dr. Katie Harmer, an Irondequoit native who plans to stay in the area and practice family medicine.

In the latest WXXI Business Report, Constellation Brands says even with coronavirus, its Mexican breweries are still operational and will still supply product to the U.S.

Plus, Vuzix says its virtual reality and augmented reality smart glasses are helping doctors in Thailand communicate with their patients in the hospital.  

Also, coronavirus is putting a halt to Xerox's plans to take over HP.