Physicians for Vital Times

These links showcase anesthesiologists engaged on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic serving their patients, communities, and colleagues. If you have a “Vital Times” story you’d like to share, please contact Alison MacLeod at 

Media Highlights 

"'Silent Hypoxics': Docs warn of coronavirus link to mysterious low oxygen symptoms," ABC News, April 28, 2020 - By Dr. Mark Abdelmalek and Dr. Jay Bhatt

Dr. Sunny Jha, a University of Southern California anesthesiologist, recently treated a man in his 60s who tested positive for COVID-19. Since the disease is known to attack the lungs, Jha tested the man's oxygen levels, though the man said he didn't have any breathing problems or any other sign of low oxygen.

Read More


"Fresno doctor helping coronavirus patients in New York,"  Central Valley News, April 16, 2020 - By Kathryn York 

Dr. Ajit Rai is a Fresno anesthesiologist now in New York volunteering on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis.

Anesthesiologists are forming highly specialized intubation teams and quickly building new protocols on how to safely manage COVID positive patients in critical settings.  Dr. Rai is helping with the emergency airway team at a COVID intensive care unit. 100 percent of his patients are COVID-positive, all of them critically-ill on life support. 

Read More

"Doctors head to coronavirus hotspots to help," CNBC, April 16, 2020

View Video

"Amid rush to secure ventilators, doctors warn of shortage of crucial drugs," CBS News, April 9, 2020 - By Melissa Quinn 

Mariano said while there are second- and third-line medications, certain classes "have a deeper bench" than others.

"What ends up happening is you start to look beyond the first-choice agents," he said of health care providers. "They knowingly have to use drugs that maybe they wouldn't have necessarily chosen, and I do think that contributes to the sense of moral injury, you know the right thing to do and you can't."

Read More

"Anesthesiologists hailed as special heroes in fight against coronavirus," ABC News, April 8, 2020 - By Dr. Angela Baldwin

Anesthesiologists, in particular, have a vast skill set that makes them extremely valuable to care teams that manage critically ill COVID-19 patients, explains Dr. Yemi Odugbesan, physician anesthesiologist and adjunct professor of anesthesiology at Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine.


“Our work as anesthesiologists in the post-normal era,” Kevin MD, March 28, 2020 - By Edward R. Mariano, MD, MAS 

Our work as anesthesiologists has changed. We no longer perform elective surgeries in our operating rooms. The weight of our role as specialized physicians has shifted from perioperative and pain medicine to emergency response, critical care, and crisis management.


“Anesthesiologists 'Ready to Jump In' to Help With COVID-19,” MedPage Today,  March 30, 2020 

Instead, Mary Dale Peterson, MD, president of the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA), encouraged more creative solutions, where both anesthesia equipment and anesthesiologists can help to support their colleagues treating COVID-19 patients.


"An urgent dispatch from the COVID-19 front lines," Kevin MD, March 25, 2020 - By Sunny Jha, MD 

Physicians, nurses, and hospitals have been working nonstop for weeks and know the tsunami is here. We should have acted long ago, but we cannot waste time arguing about what could’ve been done. We are in the now, and we are going to need your help.