I'm An ICU Doctor And I Cannot Believe The Things Unvaccinated Patients Are Telling Me

'My experiences in the ICU these past weeks have left me surprised, disheartened, but most of all, angry.'

8/1/2021 6:38:00 PM

'My experiences in the ICU these past weeks have left me surprised, disheartened, but most of all, angry.'

'My experiences in the ICU these past weeks have left me surprised, disheartened, but most of all, angry.'

Guest WriterJohn Moore via Getty ImagesA"prone team," wearing personal protective equipment (PPE), turns a COVID-19 patient onto his stomach in a Stamford Hospital intensive care unit (ICU) in Stamford, Connecticut. “We can’t let COVID win.”

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This was my colleague’s mantra when the pandemic started last year. And for the almost 18 months since, health care workers have rallied to the battlefields, even at times when we had no weapons to brandish.We took care of the infected and the critically ill when no one else would. We reused N95 masks, carefully placing them in labeled brown paper bags in between shifts. We witnessed lonely deaths and held up iPads for families to say their heartbreaking goodbyes. We created elaborate backup schedules and neglected our personal lives. We stepped up during surges and when our colleagues fell ill. Camaraderie in the ICU had never been stronger because we recognized that this was a team effort and all of humanity was battling against a common enemy.

But as health care workers, we also were painfully aware of our own vulnerabilities. We can run out of ICU resources for our patients. We can run out of personal protective equipment for ourselves. We can be exposed on the job and get sick. And we can die — many of us did, headtopics.com

more than 3,600 from COVID-19 in the first year.Many of us quarantined away from our families to protect the ones we love. We counted the risk factors of our children, our elderly parents, our spouses, and came up with our own formulas to decide whether to come home at the end of the shift or hole up in a hotel room. One of our ICU directors wrote and rewrote our COVID-19 clinical guidelines to keep up with the evolving literature and somehow she carved out the time to write her own will.

Courtesy of Thanh Neville, M.D., M.S.H.S.The author receiving her COVID-19 vaccination.I worked daily to adapt our end-of-life program to the changing needs and restrictions of the pandemic and signed up for a vaccine clinical trial as soon as one became available. I also updated my own advance directive and printed it out for my husband, just in case.

Then, effective vaccines became widely available in the U.S. — I briefly saw light at the end of the tunnel. The number of patients with COVID-19 in ICUs across the country plummeted. It looked like our sacrifices and commitment as health care workers had paid off. We believed herd immunity could become a reality and we could return to some sense of normalcy.

But the relief was short-lived, the hope was fleeting, and we are amid another surge. A surge that is fueled by a highly transmissible variant and those unvaccinated. My experiences in the ICU these past weeks have left me surprised, disheartened, but most of all, angry. headtopics.com

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I am angry that the tragic scenes of prior surges are being played out yet again, but now with ICUs primarily filled with patients who have chosen not to be vaccinated. I am angry that it takes me over an hour to explain to an anti-vaxxer full of misinformation that intubation isn’t what “kills patients” and that their wish for chest compressions without intubation in the event of a respiratory arrest makes no sense. I am angry at those who refuse to wear “muzzles” when grocery shopping for half an hour a week, as I have been so-called “muzzled” for much of the past 18 months.

I cannot understand the simultaneous decision to not get vaccinated and the demand to end the restrictions imposed by a pandemic. I cannot help but recoil as if I’ve been slapped in the face when my ICU patient tells me they didn’t get vaccinated because they “just didn’t get around to it.” Although such individuals do not consider themselves anti-vaxxers, their inaction itself is a decision — a decision to not protect themselves or their families, to fill a precious ICU bed, to let new variants flourish, and to endanger the health care workers and immunosuppressed people around them. Their inaction is a decision to let this pandemic continue to rage.

I am at a loss to understand how anyone can look at these past months of the pandemic — more than 600,000 lives lost in the U.S. and more than 4 million worldwide — and not believe it’s real or take it seriously.And meanwhile, immunocompromised people, for whom vaccines don’t generate much immunity, are desperately waiting for herd immunity. I have no way to comfort my rightfully outraged transplant patients who contracted COVID-19 after isolating for over a year and getting fully vaccinated as soon as they could. With angry tears, these patients tell me it’s not fair that there are people who are choosing to endanger both themselves and the vulnerable people around them. They feel betrayed by their fellow citizens and they are bitter and angry. I cannot blame them.

I am at a loss to understand how anyone can look at these past months of the pandemic — more than 600,000 lives lost in the U.S. and more than 4 million worldwide — and not believe it’s real or take it seriously. But the unhappy truth is that there are people who do not. They did not in the beginning and many are doubling down now. headtopics.com

I thought when this pandemic began that we were all in this fight together, engaged in a war against a common enemy. Now, I painfully realize: Perhaps we were never on the same side and we never had a common enemy. Perhaps the war has been among ourselves all along. We have won many battles but unvaccinated America is choosing to let COVID win the war.

Read more: HuffPost »

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AoifeDaibhis Our thoughts are with all healthcare workers going through this. No way I'm the only one who when I read things like this, Jude Law's voice pops in my head saying 'the cure is forsythia!' There are ignorant people, but also there are educated people in the powerful positions or having big platforms to spread fake news of COVID19 for political, power and/or financial gain, who must be prosecuted since freedom of press goes with responsibility and has consequences!

simple rule of natural selection by nature. Sorry , not sorry .. information , knowledge/accessibility on a first world country it’s a choice…. Great now they dpew their politics The pandemic of our collective stupidity thanks in large part to Fox 'News' and Facebook is worse than the virus. How many fewer people would have died if not for their efficient transmission of misinformation?

The pandemic in America is not Covid....it's the influx of ignorance! ThirdWorldCitizen Dr. Neville stated 'I thought when this pandemic began that we were all in this fight together, engaged in a war against a common enemy. Now, I painfully realize: Perhaps we were never on the same side and we never had a common enemy. Perhaps the war has been among ourselves all

Absolutely So Thanh Neville, M.D., M.S.H.S. what are the things you have heard unvaccinated people tell you You didn't mention any of these in the article. Bad title or poorly written article. 🤦‍♀️🤦‍♀️😷😷

I'm An ICU Doctor And I Cannot Believe The Things Unvaccinated Patients Are Telling Me'My experiences in the ICU these past weeks have left me surprised, disheartened, but most of all, angry.' tRump is to blame . . .

One of my patients said the vaccine made you sterile and is refusing to get vaccinated and forcing her family to forgo getting vaccinated. Even her adult children. She sid the internet told her it caused sterility amount other ridiculous claims. She said god would protect her 😳 count me as another that is angry that in the most developed country in the world where we have had the vaccine available for months this is still occurring

As a spouse of someone in the medical field (paramedic) I can say I’m angry as well. Add to it a child that cant be vaxed (age) with preexisting breathing issues and you have a very pissed off dad. embolina95 And that's before opening schools has them mostly working on children Xxx. Xxx Welcome to Communism...

Isn’t this racist? The largest unvaccinated groups are people of color. thanks Did the unvaccinated healthcare workers also comment? So do a tik tok dance... You can blame China for this. The entire world is having a spike now.

I'm An ICU Doctor And I Cannot Believe The Things Unvaccinated Patients Are Telling Me'My experiences in the ICU these past weeks have left me surprised, disheartened, but most of all, angry.' tRump is to blame . . .

After her botched surgery, she pitched a medical disclosure bill. Doctors are fighting itA powerful doctors group has fought a proposed California law that would require physicians to tell patients if they took money from drug or medical device makers. thanks STOP LINE 3 Enbridge StopLine3 NOW asssshatssssss Ridiculous. Couldn’t read any further when the law team said it would be too burdensome for the doctors. Are you serious? In that same breath they said they’re all about transparency but won’t move an inch to get anywhere near it. Hope she wins millions.

Oklahoma Running Out Of Pediatric Hospital Beds As Delta Cases RiseSome pediatric ICU patients in the state have been sent to Texas due to the coronavirus, staffing shortages and another respiratory illness.

Oklahoma Running Out Of Pediatric Hospital Beds As Delta Cases RiseSome pediatric ICU patients in the state have been sent to Texas due to the coronavirus, staffing shortages and another respiratory illness. nice I have to wonder about how many 'cases' are basically low-risk 'hey, let's keep 'em overnight and watch 'em' and so on... And... Just how much facility was set aside for pediatric covid? Given that VERY few kids have died with it... Not geezers... 회개와 거룩함 사역회 BUSAN OurEternalHome 진정한 크리스천은 박해와 온갖 핍박을 당하는 것입니다

Oklahoma Running Out Of Pediatric Hospital Beds As Delta Cases RiseSome pediatric ICU patients in the state have been sent to Texas due to the coronavirus, staffing shortages and another respiratory illness. 🥺