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“Heart Pain”: In-Hospital Working on Delta and Vaccine Hesitation | Tennessee

Nurse Matt Robinson was ready before pushing the heavy door to the recently reopened Covid-19 ward at Methodist University Hospital in downtown Memphis. Tennessee..

This wasn’t in the script. During a pandemic, after more than a year of continuous work with a Covid-19 patient, constant exposure to death and trauma caused burnout, and Robinson hoped his work would return to normal. did.

Only a few months ago, there were no Covid-19 patients in the hospital. We hope that the spread and effectiveness of vaccination in the United States will keep things that way. But in a dangerous conservative political backlash against vaccines, unvaccinated Americans and Delta variants, whose vaccination rates have peaked in Tennessee, are now paving the way for hospitals. Is experiencing a wave of new incidents.

Covid-19 hospitalization in Tennessee Doubled in the last 3 weeks, 195 to 579. Currently, far less than last winter’s peak when hospitals treated more than 3,300 Covid patients across the state, data shared with Guardians now conveys nearly 80% of new cases by Memphis officials. A highly transparent delta variant with an increase in speed or R number of 1.53, close to the highest ever in the city.

Nurses Bobby Bluford (left) and Shon Hagin meet while working in the Covid Isolation Unit at Methodist University Hospital in Memphis. Photo: Brandon Dill

When the door opens, it’s a calm moment when a brightly lit rectangular ward appears, filled with negative air machine humming and rhythmic beeps from the monitor. Behind each of the 25 doors is an isolated patient, some of whom can be seen between the white slats blinds. Many were in the prone position and were connected to oxygen cylinders. Approximately 95% of Covid-19 patients here are unvaccinated, in line with state and national trends. Doctors are already planning to move to a double-sized expansion ward to prepare for more patients in the next few days. Some now call this the fourth surge.

“When we see patients experience this one after another, especially at some point when something has proven to be effective …” said newcomer 29-year-old Robinson. “It’s sad to see that we’re back at this point.”

The average age of patients in this healthcare network is MemphisDecreased by 10 years from 61 in December 2020 to 51 now. A few months ago, the majority of the people Robinson dealt with reminded him of his grandparents and parents. Now they remind him of himself.

He recalls a recent case in which a young patient in his mid-twenties was placed on a ventilator. “It could have been me,” he said before remembering that he was completely vaccinated at the time.

“When someone of your age is sitting in that bed, or sitting on a ventilator, it just hits near the house. It’s painful to see it because we have a solution. is.”

Still, many of Robinson’s own colleagues remain unvaccinated as the hospital is considering whether to require staff to be vaccinated. Earlier that day, he spoke to one of his friends who worked in the Covid-19 ward during the pandemic.

“I don’t have to take care of you,” he told her. “I value you and I value you so much that I don’t need to meet you here.”

The info screen shows that the condition inside the Covid quarantine unit at Methodist University Hospital is normal.
The info screen shows that the condition inside the Covid quarantine unit at Methodist University Hospital is normal. Photo: Brandon Dill

However 38% of Tennessee’s population is fully vaccinated, One of the lowest rates in the country, but slightly above and even behind the deeper states south of Louisiana, Alabama, and Mississippi.

Revealing the forces behind vaccine hesitation is complex and multifaceted.From Disinformation that is widespread online, To skepticism tied to the whole body Medical Failure and Historical Abuse Against American Color Community..

But the political situation in Tennessee undoubtedly exacerbated the problem and frustrated and embarrassed many embarrassed health care workers. Tennessee Republican Governor Bill Lee vaccinated earlier this year, I didn’t do that in public, Reflects the Vaccine Dog Whistle initiated by Donald Trump.

Tennessee last week under relentless pressure from conservative state legislators Dismissed the head of the immunization programDr. Michel Fiscus, a respected pediatrician, after the right-wing repulsion targeted her as a major target. She was in the limelight when the state extended the spread of the vaccine to qualified school students.Not like Most statesA Tennessee case allows certain adolescents to be vaccinated without the direct consent of their parents.State on friday Overturned the decision Cancel the vaccination outreach for all adolescents announced last week.

After making harmless notes to set a precedent for state health providers, Fiscus was targeted by a wave of online abuse. At a June hearing in the state legislature, conservative lawmakers threatened to dissolve the entire Tennessee health sector for creating targeted vaccine ads for adolescents.

“We know how impressive young people are. To make our department look like they need vaccines … that’s the pressure from peers put by Tennessee.” Republican State Assemblyman Scott Cepicky said.. “Personally, I think you’re blamed for doing it, and you’re blaming our youth for doing it.”

Patient Care Coordinator at Methodist University Hospital, Matthew Robinson, RN (left) and Dr. John Ake.
Patient Care Coordinator at Methodist University Hospital, Matthew Robinson, RN (left) and Dr. John Ake. Photo: Brandon Dill / Guardian

Just a few weeks ago, outside the city of Knoxville, a woman Tried to drive her car through a state vaccine siteWhen she reportedly shouted “no vaccine,” she reaped 12 health care workers and came within a few inches. She was later charged with reckless endangerment.

Talking to the Guardian, Fiscus admitted that the conservative backlash against the vaccine was something she hadn’t expected. “I think I really underestimate political inequality,” she said, and like many states, the spread of Tennessee’s first vaccine was a black man with historical distrust of the health system. He said he was focusing on the minority community.

“We were all really surprised. [conservative rural white men] In the end, we became our most vaccine-hating people. It’s not necessarily due to government distrust, but due to idealism. When I got this vaccine, I somehow soothed the left of the political spectrum, “she said.

“It’s really ridiculous to see people turning this perceived political interest to the left at the expense of their own health and well-being, and the health and well-being of their families and communities.”

Some doctors in the Covid-19 ward in Memphis said they turned off the news every time a pandemic political response took place.

“I don’t think I understand that,” said Dr. John Ake. “I don’t understand why, why those ideas and decisions are being made. What I can say is that it certainly makes my job much more difficult.”

Mumford country town, 40 minutes north of Memphis, in the county Voted 73% of Trump last yearIt was not difficult to find overwhelming vaccine distrust, often rooted in conservative conspiracy theories.that’s all 25% of the population is fully vaccinated here..

“I don’t trust anything the government is doing right now,” said Mike, an unvaccinated man. He refused to reveal his name and repeated the unfounded claim that Trump won in 2020. .. They are sheep. Liberal sheep. “

He later admitted that his daughter, a “liberal college student,” was vaccinated against his wishes.

Jennifer Wade, a local hairdresser, sat in the shade and nodded in agreement. “I don’t understand how they achieved this. [the vaccine] Within a year. I can’t put it in my body. That is my constitutional right. “

Jennifer Wade outside the salon working in Mumford.
Jennifer Wade outside the salon working in Mumford. Photo: Brandon Dill / Guardian

Shelby County, home to the city of Memphis and one of only three Democratic counties in the state, has a vaccination rate of 35%, below the state average and among the major cities in Tennessee. Is the lowest.

Although the county is 52% black, African Americans now make up 67% of the 78 people admitted to Covid-19 at Methodist Le Bonheur, the city’s largest medical network.

This disparity underscores the frustration and sadness among the leaders of the black community here, who are enthusiastic about the spread of vaccines and have mixed results.

Dr. J. Lauren Sterner, pastor of the Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church, one of the city’s oldest black churches, admits that there is much more to do as the Delta variant begins to take root.

“As time goes on, I think people who were ready to get the vaccine got the vaccine. But we’re slowing down our education efforts, but the false information remains. “It’s in,” said Turner. “We are now facing a pandemic that requires vigilance and determination, and I don’t think many potentially infected people are vigilant about the simple things.”

Turner argued that the state’s lack of political leadership affected vulnerable communities throughout Tennessee, not just in white conservative areas.

“Frankly, it’s illogical to me to know the medical disparities in our state. This only puts more vulnerable people at risk,” he said. “Whether you are black, white or Hispanic, the abdication of leadership by many elected civil servants puts many inhabitants at risk.”

“Heart Pain”: In-Hospital Working on Delta and Vaccine Hesitation | Tennessee

Source link “Heart Pain”: In-Hospital Working on Delta and Vaccine Hesitation | Tennessee

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