Today, at the hospital where I work, one of the largest in New York City, Covid-19 cases continue to climb, and there’s movement to redeploy as many health care workers as possible to the E.R.s, new “fever clinics” and I.C.U.s. It’s becoming an all-healthy-hands-on-deck scenario.
The sky is falling. I’m not afraid to say it. A few weeks from now you may call me an alarmist; and I can live with that. Actually, I will keel over with happiness if I’m proven wrong.
Alarmist is not a word anyone has ever used to describe me before. I’m a board-certified surgeon and critical care specialist who spent much of my training attending to traumas in the emergency room and doing the rounds at Harvard hospitals’ intensive care units. I’m now in my last four months of training as a pediatric surgeon in New York City. Part of my job entails waking in the middle of the night to rush to the children’s hospital to put babies on a form of life support called ECMO, a service required when a child’s lungs are failing even with maximum ventilator support. Scenarios that mimic end-stage Covid-19 are part of my job. Panic is not in my vocabulary; the emotion has been drilled out of me in nine years of training. This is different.
We are living in a global public health crisis moving at a speed and scale never witnessed by living generations. The cracks in our medical and financial systems are being splayed open like a gashing wound. No matter how this plays out, life will forever look a little different for all of us.
Opinion | A New York Doctor’s Coronavirus Warning: The Sky Is Falling – The New York Times https://t.co/U9AsOzSUIo
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) March 19, 2020