We have all heard the stories about nurses claiming that their hospital is not filled to capacity, or how their particular area is not so hard hit, and so they want to play like the Wuhan virus doesn’t exist. I just spoke with a good friend of mine who is an ICU nurse, and passed on the conditions at her hospital:
The ICU filled up about two weeks ago, so they began converting other areas of the hospital to be overflow ICU. Nurses typically work a 12 hour shift, three days a week. The ICU nurses are now working six of those 12 hour shifts per week. Becoming an ICU nurse requires years of training and experience, especially with the current challenging conditions. They can’t simply take a nurse from a random section of the hospital and stick them in the ICU.
The ED isn’t as busy as normal because most people are sitting at home doing nothing, and the remainder are not going to the ED for minor, stupid shit because people perceive the ED as a place filled with COVID patients and they don’t want to be exposed. For the first time in my memory, the ED is being used for actual emergencies.
What this means is that the nurses who worked in the (now shut down) areas of the hospital that have been converted to ICUs are being sent home, the ED seems slow (unless you are in a high COVID region), and the ICU and respiratory units are all working overtime.