April * is one of the thousands.
She calls it the “hidden face of a pandemic.”
COVID-19 One of the small troops working 24 hours across Australia to ensure that the Healthcare Cog stays in motion.
April is a hospital pathologist and one of the healthcare professionals who ensure the collection and evaluation of COVID-19 tests. It plays an important role in Australia’s ongoing protection against COVID-19.
But, of course, unlike contact tracers and front-line hospital workers in countries who regularly appreciate their work, pathologists are one of many little-recognized medical professionals.
Healthcare workers in all sectors are under severe pressure due to the domino effect of COVID-19.
According to April, they are “exhausted, overworked, understaffed, and anxious to come out of the other end of the pandemic.”
“The workload has increased by 300%,” she said. “One pathologist said the day began with 9,000 tests.
“Pathology has long been forgotten. [It’s] Behind-the-scenes department in the hospital. We often feel under-recognition and under-evaluation.
April was one of the hundreds of people in contact across the country.
Due to their contract, most healthcare professionals cannot talk to the media. They told ABC on the condition that their identities were not revealed.
On Monday, ABC will talk about front-line nurses and other hospital workers treating COVID patients.
But as April says, healthcare professionals in all industries are in a pinch.
This is what some people had to say:
“We are working overtime to treat close contact between COVID patients and cancer. We wear full PPE and ask them to undergo a COVID test every three days. Staff Everyone is burned out and if someone gets sick we have to keep working due to lack of staff .. We weren’t busy. ” Irene *, oncologist, Sydney
“I’m concerned about the spillover effects of these rolling lockdowns on the health and well-being of children and their families. Talking to medical professionals in different disciplines, so many people have deep-seated fatigue. It shows very prominent symptoms. Burnout syndrome. ” Madison *, Pediatric Nurse, Victoria
“As a healthcare professional, when you’re very tired, I’m tired of getting up every day to motivate and recover my patients. I live alone and someday unaware that I’ve signed up. There is always the underlying anxiety of getting to work. Because it’s a community COVID, I’m going to limit what I do outside of working hours. ” Rebecca *, Rehabilitation Physiotherapist, Victoria
“I was nervously watching other states. I’m sure it won’t last. Despite being fully vaccinated, I’m still experiencing the outbreak of WA and the challenges it poses. I’m worried and waiting. ” Philip *, Pulmonologist, Perth
“It was very difficult to work as a psychologist during a pandemic. I’m pressing for my worst tendency to” push “in front of me and take care of others. The anxiety associated with an increased likelihood of being infected with COVID-19 is significant.More serious is the fear of unknowingly passing it on to vulnerable clients. [or] Take it home. ” Emma *, psychologist, Melbourne
For Sydney dentist Anna *, the blockade in Sydney caused confusion about what she could and couldn’t do.
In New South Wales, “non-urgent” dental treatment should be postponed if it is “clinically appropriate.” In Victoria, only patients who are “in urgent need or care” can be seen.
Anna said it was difficult to determine what “not urgent” meant.
“I talked to a colleague in western Sydney, who told me that police were stopping at dental surgery and they stopped doing things like cleaning,” she said. rice field.
“But this is oral hygiene, not the cosmetics industry. We are an essential medical service. For example, what do we do if someone has periodontitis?”
Anna said she and her colleagues were “feared” about the threat of infection, but felt obliged to continue their work.
“It’s a high aerosol job,” she said.
“We treat everyone as if they were HIV positive and take all possible precautions.
“But in reality, I’m worried that the authorities may attack me because of my work, problems, or being sued if a patient becomes infected.”
Peta, a Sydney radiation therapist, said it was “challenging” when resources were being deprived to deal with COVID-19.
“Everyone is aware of the pressure that the pressure to take a break puts on the other members of the team,” she said.
“And because of the impact it has on everyone else, people don’t want to take a vacation.
“Then my colleague needs to take a vacation because of burnout.”
She said staff treat everyone as if it were a COVID case, a common theme among healthcare professionals who spoke to ABC, and need to change PPE multiple times a day. I did.
Returning to the hospital system, Terry *, an operating room nurse at a major Sydney hospital, said the COVID threat (that is, all patients had to be treated with a COVID positive or “COVID pathway”) caused a significant delay. Said that.
“The COVID protocol extends one hour of surgery to three hours,” he said. “A large number of staff have been relocated to COVID [patients] We are very short. However, these protocols require 10 staff instead of 6 before.
“Everyone is really struggling. It’s hard to move yourself every day, knowing that the same thing is happening over and over again.”
“The public doesn’t care”
Arguably, the most common theme that arose from the ABC call was the impact that the pandemic had on the mental health of both health care workers and the patients with whom they worked.
Phillip *, a clinical psychologist working with healthcare professionals, said the worst part for many was “the belief that the general public doesn’t care enough to follow the rules.”
“This belief is a major predictor of mental health deterioration,” he said. “I’ve heard the horrifying stories of assault, bullying, brutal schedules, and inadequate PPE. The casualties are enormous and growing.”
Counselor and psychologist Kathy * said she saw “clinician burnout, compassionate fatigue, and compensatory trauma.”
“It’s like fighting fire. You can’t lower the hose and the fire is still burning,” she said.
“It’s survival mode. When is it your turn to take a breath? And when does it stop?”
* All healthcare workers have been renamed
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