A South Dakota nurse turned to Twitter on Sunday to highlight the tragic feature of the coronavirus pandemic: patients fighting healthcare workers because they do not believe COVID-19 is real.
“Those who shout at you for a magic cure and that Joe Biden will ruin the United States. All this while panting at 1
Jody Doring, a nurse registered at the emergency department, described the phenomenon in an interview with CNN on Monday after her Twitter posts garnered widespread attention: it’s just the culmination of so many people, and their last dying words are, “This can’t happen, it’s not real.”
“And when they have to spend time at FaceTime looking at their families, they’re just filled with anger and hatred. I just can’t believe these are their last words, “she said.
Some patients are so convinced that the virus does not exist that when they test positive, they insist it should be the flu, pneumonia or even lung cancer, Doring said.
The nurses, in turn, watch the patients get sick in the same way, receive the same hospital treatment, and then die in the same way – and then the nurses return the next day when the cycle repeats. “It’s like a movie where credits never roll,” Doring said.
The Dakota is currently the epicenter of the U.S. pandemic with the fastest-moving cases per capita, according to data tracked by Johns Hopkins University and the state’s own health departments. Experts say the Sturgis motorcycle rally, which was held with the encouragement of the Governor of South Dakota in August, was probably a mass event, as it is reported that about half a million motorcyclists attended and many gathered tightly in bars and restaurants without to wear face masks.
North Dakota has 63,802 confirmed cases of COVID-19, according to the New York Times, and at least 742 people have died.
North Dakota’s hospital system is at full capacity, according to Gov. Doug Burgham, who said last week that health workers who test positive will be able to treat patients with COVID at least temporarily due to chronic staff shortages.
South Dakota had 65,381 confirmed cases and at least 644 deaths, the tracker said. According to his health department, the hospital system has a capacity of 64%, while the intensive care beds have a capacity of 67%.
“We’re managing our patients here right now … but the reality is it’s not getting any better,” Doring said.
The South Dakota rate of positivity is estimated at 50% to 60%, she said. “We have 880,000 people – it doesn’t take much math to figure out how many of us are sick.” (The Census Bureau estimates the state’s population at 884,659 as of July 2019)
Experts have complained about the US inability to conduct contact tracking, isolation and quarantine procedures that have helped some countries and regions curb the spread of the deadly disease. Trump scoffed at face masks, including Democrat Joe Biden, his presidential opponent; said the virus would simply disappear one day; has promoted ineffective or even harmful treatment; and admitted to journalist Bob Woodward in recorded interviews that he had deliberately downplayed the virus earlier in the outbreak.
Look now: Coronavirus update: US average 150,000 COVID-19 cases a day as expert warns of impending “humanitarian catastrophe”