As the novel coronavirus pandemic sweeps across the world, there are increasing numbers of healthcare workers who are succumbing to the illness, a problem that has worsened in the face of personal protective equipment shortages.
The coronavirus pandemic, which has infected more than 1.5 million people throughout the world, is taking a toll on those who are the most needed to fight it: the doctors, nurses and other workers at medical facilities. In emergency rooms and intensive care units, medical professionals are feeling panicked as growing numbers of their friends and colleagues fall ill. Over a hundred healthcare workers have died fighting coronavirus across the world.
Over 2,000 HCWs in Michigan Affected by COVID-19
Over 700 healthcare workers in Detroit’s Henry Ford Health System have tested positive for COVID-19, according to the system’s EVP and chief clinical officer. Modern Healthcare reported that most cases are mild but an RN at Henry Ford Hospital died from COVID-19 last week. Also in Detroit, 1,500 employees at Beaumont Health are staying home due to COVID-19 symptoms, while Detroit Medical Center has had “dozens” of healthcare workers test positive or call in sick.
New York City Healthcare Frontlines
At least half the intensive-care staff has already been sickened by coronavirus at Columbia University Irving Medical Center in Manhattan. A 48-year-old assistant nursing manager at Mount Sinai West medical center in Manhattan, died recently after he previously tested positive for COVID-19. At another New York City hospital, the lack of protective equipment has become so dire, the medical staff have resorted to wearing trash bags to shield themselves from the virus, where at least one nursing assistant has died, reports the New York Post.
A Nurse Dies in St Louis
A nurse with preexisting health issues died after testing positive for the coronavirus at SSM Health St Mary’s Hospital in St Louis, Missouri. according to the St. Louis American. The woman, who was in her 60s, had not traveled outside the country. She was the first person in St Louis to die from the virus.
Two Georgia Healthcare Workers Test Positive
In Georgia, two healthcare workers who tested positive for the virus died: a 48-year-old woman who worked at Donalsonville Hospital and a 42-year-old mammogram technician at Piedmont Newnan Hospital, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. The women were the state’s first healthcare workers to die from the pandemic.
Boston’s Healthcare Force Hit with Pandemic
Throughout Boston’s hospitals, at least 345 employees have tested positive for coronavirus. Massachusetts General Hospital has reported 115 cases, while Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center has 62, Tufts has 61 and Brigham & Women’s Hospital has 107, NPR reports. Massachusetts has more than 13,000 cases and 260 deaths.
Doctors in Spain Plead for Help
As deaths from the coronavirus begin to slow In Spain, medical workers continue to sound the alarm on a still dire situation. Medical providers cite a lack of protective gear and have also turned to creative measures to keep themselves safe, using raincoats, garbage bags and other improvised shields, reports Time. In Madrid, over one fifth of cases are healthcare workers.
Italy Sees High Infection Rates in Medical Workers
CNN reports that a total of 4,826 health care workers in Italy have been infected by the coronavirus. Those numbers mean that nearly 9% of those infected nationwide by the virus are healthcare workers. At least 18 doctors in Italy have died as a consequence of the pandemic.
Healthcare Workers Deaths Have Slowed in China
As China succeeds at containing the virus, the number of reports of healthcare workers failing ill from the pandemic has slowed. After taking what some described as draconian measures to contain the spread of the virus, the country has started to lift its lockdown, and life has slowly begun to grind back to normal in many parts of the region.