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New COVID-19 ‘wave’ causing mental health strain on medical workers – Denver, Colorado

Denver, Colorado 2020-11-20 00:38:59 –

Denver (KDVR) — Healthcare professionals are head-on with the second wave of COVID-19 as they continue to address record numbers across Colorado.

The state set a new high on Thursday with 1,500 COVID-19 hospitalizations and 86% of the state’s intensive care unit beds used. Not all of these beds are occupied by COVID-19 patients, but healthcare professionals say the influx of patients is damaging their mental health.

“It’s scary. I think it’s just the volume coming in. It’s a completely different feeling than the waves coming back in March and April,” said Kyle Marika, a member of the House of Representatives and a nurse in the emergency room.

Marika has a unique perspective as both a legislator and a healthcare professional.

“We’ve been doing this for over eight months in the midst of a pandemic. We’re all grateful to be called heroes and angels. It’s all working. But we’re real. He is also a person, “says Marika.

According to Lexi Eliades, a behavioral medical clinician at the Aurora Medical Center, more healthcare professionals are seeking help with their mental health. Eliades helped create a HealthONE peer support team shortly before the pandemic began.

“The goal is to support people’s health and mental health and do it in a way that they can reach out safely. The team needed more people because of the pandemic.”

Eliades said he noticed an increase in demand from hospital workers during the second wave of the virus.

“The common theme was unclear. What will our lives be like, what will our work be like, and how will our services to patients change?” Eliades said.

She reminds people that hospital staff often face the worst COVID-19. Seeing people die alone, not only treat patients who are unable to welcome visitors, but also adapt to the overall patient surge.

Marika says the best way to help healthcare professionals today is to follow public health orders.

“If you’re not going to do it yourself, do it for the nurses you call heroes. Maybe it’s going to cheer people up because the trajectory we’re on isn’t sustainable. Let’s do it, “Marika said.

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