Social media is bloated with coronavirus responses, some from silver-lining seekers taking note of the opportunity inherent in enforced self-isolation, slowing down, reconnection. These encouragements are essential for many of us, but don’t forget our healthcare workers.
While some are leaving work and shutting down, others are ramping up to crisis mode. I’ve been a fly on the wall, observing Jonathan’s multi-faceted, many-teamed campaign with clinicians and leadership at the hospital to prepare for a tsunami of sick patients. From daybreak to late night, they are conferencing, strategizing – how to maximize available beds, how to train staff in cross-coverage, how to keep colleagues apart so as not to lose them all to illness or exposure, how to protect employees – housekeeping, maintenance, techs, administrators, nurses, physicians.
Then there are all the ethical questions. What criteria will they use to decide who gets maximum protective equipment and who doesn’t? Which patients are sent home and which get a bed? Who gets a ventilator and who doesn’t? No one wants to face these decisions, but if they become necessary, they mustn’t be decided chaotically.
Some of us face the challenge of isolation. Others face 24/7 crisis care. Be aware of your neighbor’s challenge, but make no mistake – both jobs have the power to determine another person’s life or death. Do your part.
My 60th year in 60,000 words
Day 207: 219 words, TOTAL = 33,994; 26,006 remaining
Robin Clifford Wood is a writer and writing teacher. She lives in central Maine with her husband and dogs, loves to be outdoors, and enjoys ever-expanding horizons through her grown children and their multi-species families.