What started as a passion project of a family ended up helping hundreds of patients struggling to communicate with their doctors and family members. Here’s how they achieved it and how you can do the same.

There has been a rising number of COVID-19 cases around the world. Serious symptoms of COVID-19 patients reveal increasing breathlessness, cough, chest pain, and loss of speech or movement. 

According to Dra. Luisa Ticzon Puyat in her Facebook post, patients who are very sick need to be admitted to the hospital, more than half of which require assistance with oxygen, usually in a standard hospital room. However, patients who experience worsening breathing difficulties necessitate admission to an ICU. In the ICU, patients are treated with a high-flow humidified oxygen. This helps oxygenenation via a nasal mask that gently pumps oxygen into the lungs at a comfortable rate, allowing the patient to freely speak and eat. If the breathing does not improve, the patient gets intubated restricting them from speaking and are usually fed through a nasogastric/orgastic tube. 

So how can intubated patients communicate with their doctors and nurses?

Marianne De Dios and her family found a way. They were inspired to produce flashcard-like Communication Cards that they can give out to patients who have a hard time or are unable to express themselves. They took note of the important information that doctors usually ask patients and vice versa. They were also guided by the Philippine Association of Speech Pathologists (PASP).

They started producing Communication Cards at the beginning of the quarantine last March designed by the PASP. They were able to raise PHP45,000 with the help of family and friends, along with Rex Bookstore who volunteered to print the Communication Cards. They successfully printed 1,000 laminated copies. These Comm Cards were donated to 19 different hospitals, namely:

  • Adventist Medical Center
  • Asian Hospital and Medical Center
  • Cardinal Santos
  • Capitol Medical Center
  • East Avenue Medical Center, 
  • Lung Center Philippines
  • Makati Medical Center
  • Manila Doctors Hospital
  • Mary Chiles Hospital
  • Medical City
  • Philippine General Hospital
  • Quirino Hospital
  • St. Claire Medical center
  • St. Lukes Medical Center BGC
  • Tala Hospital 
  • UERM
  • UST Hospital 
  • VRP Medical Center

There are many more hospitals and patients who would need this.

  1. You may download these communication boards on a short bond paper and print it.
  2. Make sure it has a plastic envelope/sleeve or is laminated.
  3. You may download your Communication Cards and your preferred language on PDF file made by the Philippine Association of Speech Pathologists (PASP): Communication Boards
    • These Communication Cards come in different languages
      • English
      • Filipino
        • Bikol
        • Cebuano
        • Chavacano
        • Hiligaynon
        • Ilokano
        • Kapampangan
        • Waray
      • Chinese
      • German
      • Spanish

Photos by: Sophia De Dios

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