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Doctor ‘working like crazy’ to care for COVID-19 patients says local surge ‘hasn’t even really started’

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By STEPHANIE BAUMER, DIGITAL CONTENT PRODUCER

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    ST. LOUIS, MO (KMOV) — After 18 months of dealing with COVID-19, a Mercy doctor is sharing his perspective on the situation.

Mercy shared Dr. David Tannehill’s story on social media Thursday morning. Dr. Tannehill is Mercy’s clinical director of critical care medicine and medical director of Mercy Washington’s Intensive Care Unit.

Dr. Tannehill shared that he has been working “like crazy” to care for people who “should not be this sick.” When he isn’t at a patient’s bedside, Dr. Tannehill wrote that he spends time helping hospital staff “deal with potentially unmanageable surge” of patients. He also stressed that the local surge of coronavirus patients “hasn’t even really started yet.”

Read Dr. Tannehill’s complete perspective below:

“To be honest, I have stayed from this issue as much as I can. It isn’t healthy for me. I have spent much of the past few weeks working like crazy to care for a lot of patients that really just should not be this sick- and maybe they shouldn’t be sick at all. When I’m not at the bedside, I’m working a lot of hours helping my colleagues, nurses, respiratory therapists, pharmacists and hospital administrators prepare for and/or deal with a potentially unmanageable surge of COVID-19 patients. Helping Mercy decide to buy more ventilators and respiratory equipment for a condition that is, in all likelihood, nearly completely preventable is pretty demoralizing.

If I spend any time on the fact that a simple vaccination could have saved our friends and neighbors a whole lot of suffering and death, I worry that I won’t be able to keep it together well enough to do my job as effectively as I can.

It’s much easier to ignore the noise and just do my job without thinking of Why. If I think about why my job is so hard right now, it just hurts that much more.

I’m tired of family meetings and tears and sadness and death. I’m just tired. And this surge [in the STL area] hasn’t even really started yet.”

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Article Topic Follows: CNN - Regional

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