‘I lost 3 patients within the first 8 hours of my shift!’ A new person would come in, sicker then the one before.’: ER nurse begs people to follow quarantine rules, ‘don’t think of yourselves being ‘STUCK’ at home, but being SAFE at home’

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“Last night at work was by far the worst night I have ever had as a Nurse. People…PLEASE, I’M BEGGING YOU, follow the quarantine instructions! Don’t think of yourselves as being ‘STUCK’ at home. Instead, think of it as being ‘SAFE’ AT HOME! It may help change your attitude, and help you tolerate being home.

Last night in the ER, there were 6 patients that passed away. 6 people won’t be going back home to their loved ones. Of those 6 patients, 3 of them were mine…2 of the 3 I had just got into their rooms and took their vitals. They were good. Nothing about their vital signs gave me the impression that they were about to crash.

One patient had even thrown their shoe at the closed glass door to get our attention. They wanted to make sure the oxygen mask was on right and let us know they had dropped the call light on the floor. I picked up the call light, gave it back, and reassessed their vitals. They denied having any pain, were comfortable, and just were waiting for a bed assignment.

Less than 30 minutes later, the monitor started to alarm. I along with another RN and the RRT (Respiratory Therapist) ran into the room…the doctor arrived a few seconds later…this patient had coded and there was nothing we could do to bring them back to life.

I’m still having a difficult time wrapping my head around the fact that my patient was TALKING to me and LESS THAN 30 minutes later they were DEAD!!!

As the doctor was pronouncing the time of death, we had to quickly run into another room because my co-worker’s patient suddenly took a turn for the worse as well. Fortunately, we were able to stabilize that patient…but for how long?

As quickly as these patients are taking a turn for the worst, it’s not giving us much time to save them. We are treating ALL PATIENTS (here in Detroit) as positive for the Coronavirus/COVID-19.

The ER is overcrowded with patients…last night I was in the ICU section of the ER with 2 other nurses. Each of us had anywhere from 6 to 9 patients at a time…with most of them on ventilators. As soon as one patient either was admitted and went upstairs or expired, EVS was in there cleaning, and within 15 minutes a new patient would come rolling in, sicker than the patient before them.

Last night, nearly broke me…I struggled internally to compartmentalize the fact that I LOST 3 PATIENTS WITHIN THE FIRST 8 HOURS OF MY 12 HOUR SHIFT!!!

My heart aches for my patients and their families. More so since no visitors are allowed and their family members are calling to check up on them. We tell them how their treatments are going, their vitals are stable, that their loved ones are doing okay, and we’re just waiting for a bed assignment. Only to call them back a couple hours later (or less) and tell them that their family member has died. The worst part is not being able to give them a reason as to what happened, and why so quickly!

So…if you’re still reading my long post…PLEASE TAKE THIS QUARANTINE SERIOUSLY!!! On the frontlines, I cannot stress enough how bad it has gotten and it’s only going to get worse before it gets better.

I work the next 2 nights in Detroit at DMC-Sinai Grace, and I am struggling mentally to pull it together. I know I need to put my big girl panties on, pull ’em up and suck it up…however it’s not as easy this time.”

Aimee DeLineThis story was written by Aimee DeLine of Michgian. Do you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTubefor our best videos.

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