Avigdor Zeitlin spent six weeks in the hospital fighting the coronavirus and because health guidelines suspended hospital visitations, he was battling the disease alone.
“It was, it was lonely, you know. It was lonely knowing that my wife and kids are far away and I'm sort of helpless,” Zeitlin said.
But with the help of Welltab, he was able to have his family by his side for the last two week of his hospital stay.
Chaim Rothstein, a spokesperson for WellTab, said the non-profit creates custom simple tablets that "creates that audio-visual connection between the loved ones and their patients in the hospital.”
WellTab is a nonprofit organization out of Brooklyn that provides specialized tablets that allow plug-and-play live streaming between patients and their families. A tablet is delivered to the hospital and one is sent to the family. And unlike FaceTime or Skype, there is no need to enter in any information to be connected.
"Families were calling hospitals and obviously that created an additional burden for the medical staff to be able to talk to the family members to give them updates," Rothstein said. "Family members were asking 'oh can you, you know, give the phone to my, to my brother, my mother, so I can speak to them and, you know, the medical staff was overloaded with the actual job of dealing and, you know, healing and saving these patients.”
For Zeitlin, it was a game changer.
“It really really helped me," he said. "It was the closest thing to having a family present in the room. I was able to talk to my wife, able to talk to my children. I was able to even, you know, my kids play music,” said Zeitlin.
The tablets have been distributed across the state and some say having them in the hospitals and with families has helped with patient recovery.
“We've heard stories that people, you know, they've been declining for days and then they get this tablet, they can finally see their loved ones and things turn around," Rothstein said. "They're able to, within within a couple of days, they're already showing you so much more improvement."
“Having the tablet just reground me to my reality, my true reality, my family, my home," said Zeitlin. "Without these tablets, I don't think my recovery, coming out and sedation, or, you know, coma, it wouldn't have been as smooth and as uneventful."
The tablets were not only beneficial for the patients, but was also a way to ease the minds of family members at home.
"My wife and kids were able to see how I'm progressing," Zeitlin said. "And it was everything for them. It was, it was calming. It was reassuring.”
WellTab currently has 900 sets of tablets in hospitals across the state including Orange Regional Medical Center.
“These tablets really were, for me and for my family, were just a lifesaver,” said Zeitlin.
The non-profit is hoping to have 10,000 tablets in circulation across the country and internationally if possible.