Nurses describe the local fight against Covid-19

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – Two Erlanger Hospital nurses caring for COVID-19 patients gave us an insight on their experiences.

News 12’s Bekah Birdsall has the story.

Meet Victoria Hunter and Cody Sims, both Registered Nurses at Erlanger Hospital.

Over the past several months, they have cared for COVID-19 patients and been on the front lines of the virus.

“It really felt like we were being drafted into a war that we didn’t know was coming, like it was very scary.”

“It was pretty nerve-wracking at first trying to figure out how to take care of the patients, how to just properly go through the day.”

Overtime as more information and guidelines were set and the hospital changing their model of care for COVID-19 patients, they say days got much easier.

“We know to wear the proper PPE so at this point, I feel like the chances of me passing it to my husband are pretty small, but you know it is definitely something that we think about when we take measures.”

Around the hospital, they were N95 masks and hair covers, but have to gear up when entering a patients room.

“It starts with hand hygiene, and then you’re putting on your first pair of gloves. You put on your gown, put on a second pair of gloves, and then you’re putting on either eye wear like this or you’re putting on a full face shield. There’s never been an issue where I can’t go in a room because there’s no PPE.”

They said most of their patients are on a non invasive ventilator which is uncomfortable, but one of the only options.

“You can’t talk or hear anything through them. They are loud, their basically suctioned to your face. It’s just almost impossible to talk or be heard through them, so our patients are miserable.”

Both nurses described the heartbreak of seeing their patients lose their battle with COVID-19.

“We want to encourage everyone to be mindful of how their acting, not only for themselves but for the people around them.”

“You got to figure out how to learn to live, but safely at this point. I mean, we can’t keep spreading it, we just can’t.”

Reporting in Chattanooga, Bekah BIrdsall, News 12 Now.

Categories: Chattanooga, Featured, Health, Healthcare Heroes, Local News