Frontline doctors and nurses are exhausted with burdens on their shoulders: Miserable but ‘if I also fall, what will happen to the patient?’

While driving in Wuhan last March, Zhang Xiaochun had to pull over suddenly, because the female doctor was on the verge of collapse. She had to work non-stop for many days at the center that received the first Covid-19 cases in China.

Both her parents and many of her colleagues were infected one by one. The number of cases and the number of people unable to pass the death door kept increasing without any sign of stopping. At one point, Dr. Zhang forgot about his 9-year-old daughter, who was home alone and scared. Zhang’s face filled with tears, but she no longer had the strength to cry. The doctor shared in an interview on February 18, 2020: “My tears flowed back in.”

The frontline doctors and nurses in the fight against the epidemic are exhausted with the burden on their shoulders: Miserable, but if I also fall, what will happen to the patient?  - Photo 1.

Sacrificing your health or even your own life

Doctors around the world are carrying a lot of weight on their shoulders right now. They lack medical equipment, work long hours a day and have almost no time to rest. They are fighting a deadly disease that is still not fully understood. Not only that, they also sacrificed their own lives and even the health of their families to protect the community.

In China, doctors have to work in shifts that last at least 10 hours straight. Many people have to wear protective gear at all times, do not have enough food and water, and it is difficult to bathe and wash because every time they take off that protective suit, they face the risk of exposure. More than ever, the team of medical staff is in need of psychological help to be able to stand up and deal with the psychological stress of this time.

The frontline doctors and nurses in the fight against the epidemic are exhausted with the burden on their shoulders: Miserable, but if I also fall, what will happen to the patient?  - Photo 2.

Doctors and nurses understand very well the risk of infection of infectious diseases like Covid-19. However, the intense outbreak of this pandemic forced hospitals to deploy staff with limited experience even accepting equipment shortages to protect themselves. In South Korea, some nurses and support staff quit as the epidemic spread, their families begging their children to leave the “battlefield” at hospitals. Iran has faced a shortage of equipment, its Deputy Health Minister – himself a surgeon – has also been infected with the virus.

“If we fail, what will the patients do?”

With female doctor Zhang, in the past, she has experienced major epidemic crises such as the SARS outbreak in 2003 and the 2008 Sichuan earthquake. In early 2020, when the hospital where she worked. Receiving two pneumonia patients related to SARS, Zhang canceled travel plans with his family and rushed back to the office. A few days later, more and more patients began to come with similar symptoms and eventually hundreds of thousands of people flocked to the hospital.

Although she is only in charge of reading X-ray films, she still wears protective gear regularly and treats herself as a patient. Worried that she might infect her loved ones and overload her with work, she chose to sleep on the sofa in the office. Zhang barely had time to eat and bathe.

The frontline doctors and nurses in the fight against the epidemic are exhausted with the burden on their shoulders: Miserable, but if I also fall, what will happen to the patient?  - Photo 3.

But then, not long after, her father and mother both fell ill. They have a false negative test with nucleic acids. However, the photo CT says something completely different. Her father has pneumonia, although the symptoms are not obvious. “Holding the results in my hand, I knew something must have happened. My heart was in turmoil.” Fortunately, her daughter is healthy. Faced with two crises at the same time: the epidemic and the worry of taking care of her children because her husband works far away, Zhang decided to keep her grandparents isolated in her own room and her daughter in the living room.

It was the 9-year-old girl who warmed the food herself and left it at the door for her grandparents. However, her parents’ symptoms gradually worsened, they were forced to be hospitalized for treatment. OLDHong she was also quickly granted a permit to go home. The number of patients every day is increasing and it is so overloaded that there is no bed for them to lie down. Zhang and his colleagues had to move to the hotel to work and rest. At the end of each day, when he was returned to his hotel room, Zhang felt “a pain in his back” and no sense of time. Zhang shared: “If we fail, what will the patients do?”

Frontline doctors and nurses in the fight against the epidemic are exhausted with a heavy burden on their shoulders: Miserable, but if I also fall, what will happen to the patient?  - Photo 4.

Nguồn: The Wall Street Journals

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