Local 12: Misunderstood guidelines about COVID-19 overwhelming doctors

UC infectious disease expert says strain on healthcare workers is overwhelming

The recent surge in COVID-19 is driving the number of cases to record highs in the course of the pandemic. The impact is being felt at area hospitals who continue to battle the pandemic. In a story published by WKRC-TV, Carl Fichtenbaum, MD, of the Division of Infectious Diseases at the UC College of Medicine, said that the surge is putting a lot of stress on healthcare providers. 

“I think many people will sit on their--so to speak--front porch and think, 'oh its not that bad,' or 'oh, I just had a cold its not a big deal.' But they don’t get to walk in our shoes they don’t get to see what we see," said Fichtenbaum.

Carl Fichtenbaum, MD, of the Division of Infectious Diseases at the UC College of Medicine

Hospital beds are at a critical level with ICU beds at full capacity according to the latest data from the Health Collaborative.

“We have the same needs in our hospitals but fewer people to meet those needs. So, we have all sorts of what we call 'Jeopardy schedules' where it’s the next person up. What this does, is it takes a weary healthcare provider group that has been working for two years tirelessly to take care of our community,” Fichtenbaum said. “And yet another wave of people getting sick. It’s disheartening, it’s overwhelming at times.“

Fichtenbaum told Local 12 we are close to seeing a peak in case numbers but he says the true impact will take weeks, if not months, to be seen as more people continue to be hospitalized.

“When you're a healthcare provider and you see someone sick and people aren’t wearing masks, people aren’t washing their hands, people aren’t staying away from large gatherings, people aren’t getting vaccinated, then we say to ourselves, 'You know, we feel like sometimes we’re drowning in a deep ocean and there’s nobody out there to throw us one of those life preservers,'" Fichtenbaum said.

See the entire article here

Lead photo/NPR

Next Lives Here

The University of Cincinnati is classified as a Research 1 institution by the Carnegie Commission and is ranked in the National Science Foundation's Top-35 public research universities. UC's medical, graduate and undergraduate students and faculty investigate problems and innovate solutions with real-world impact. Next Lives Here.