HUMANS OF THE HOSPITAL: Dr Benson Riddle and Khalil Kazan

“Of the thousands of patients the inTouch COVID Care team have looked after in home isolation, Khalil was the first patient I’ve met face-to-face.

To hear how he described the service, how reassuring he found it and how appreciative he was for it, especially as someone who was living alone, was definitely a highlight for me since starting in this role in July 2021.

During the Delta lockdown, before most people were vaccinated and before antivirals, the inTouch doctors and nurses were calling patients once or twice a day as people were a lot sicker.

It was a scary time.

We started with 100 patients and every few days it was almost doubling. In early September we had over 2,000 COVID-19 positive patients in our care.

We had to quickly build a big team of doctors, nurses and allied health professionals from across the district to manage the patient load.

Our service has changed a number of times over the last year, and very quickly, which is an achievement I’m really proud of.

Oral antivirals are impressive in how much they can reduce a person from getting a severe case of COVID. People can go downhill really quickly, so to be able to give antivirals to people who are at high risk of getting a severe case of COVID is reassuring.”

– Dr Benson Riddle, Western Sydney Local Health District inTouch COVID Care team Medical Lead with former inTouch patient and Granville resident Khalil Kazan.

‘Humans of the Hospital’ is dedicated to the inspiring humans working at Westmead, Blacktown, Mount Druitt Auburn and Cumberland hospitals in western Sydney.