Dr. Frank Gabrin, a two-time cancer survivor, woke up gasping for air on Tuesday.
His husband told NJ.com that Gabrin, an emergency-room doctor in New Jersey, had to reuse personal protective equipment. The hospitals Gabrin worked at, however, told NBC New York they were stocked.
“Frank made it very clear that it’s not about what happens — it’s not about the outcome, you don’t get to save every patient — but it’s about what you do with the outcome,” a friend of his, Debra Lyons, told CNN on Wednesday.
Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
An emergency-room doctor died in his husband’s arms on Tuesday, a week after first noticing symptoms consistent with COVID-19 — and after being forced by shortages to reuse protective masks and gowns while treating patients with the novel coronavirus two weeks ago, his husband alleges.
“He loved to help people,” Arnold Vargas, Dr. Frank Gabrin’s bereaved spouse, told CNN’s Chris Cuomo on Wednesday. Speaking less than 24 hours after Gabrin died suddenly after waking up unable to breathe, Vargas, weeping, was unable to continue.
Earlier, Vargas told NJ.com that his husband, who worked at East Orange General Hospital in New Jersey and St. John’s Episcopal Hospital in Queens, New York, woke up on Tuesday saying: “Baby, I can’t breathe.” Vargas told the news site that Gabrin reused N95 masks and hospital gowns while treating patients. Both hospitals told NBC New York they were stocked with personal protective equipment.
Gabrin was reportedly on the front lines two weeks ago, when about a week ago he developed symptoms. He was never tested for COVID-19 but had symptoms that were consistent with the disease, NJ.com reported.
On CNN, Debra Lyons, who has described Gabrin as her best friend, said his condition rapidly deteriorated. “He didn’t expect this to happen,” she said. “It went from manageable to unmanageable overnight.”
She said Gabrin, a two-time cancer survivor, “lost his life needlessly” and would have wanted her and his husband to speak with the media for a simple reason: to save others.
“Frank made it very clear that it’s not about what happens — it’s not about the outcome, you don’t get to save every patient — but it’s about what you do with the outcome,” she said.
“It’s a big thing we’re asking them to face, with no tools,” Lyons continued. “Being on the front lines is what each one of these healthcare workers prepared themselves for — they did not expect to have to go to it with nothing.”
Have a news tip? Email this reporter: [email protected]
Read the original article on Business Insider