Frontline nurse gets yelled at by people going to the hospital, asks for more understanding

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It’s not about you.

I’m a nurse working on the front line of COVID-19. When I mean front line, I mean since the hospital essentially went on lockdown since this virus was announced a pandemic, I’ve been working at the main entrance screening every single person that walks in those doors. Even those who are trying to find the Emergency Department so they can be tested for COVID-19.

Every single person gets asked the same series of questions. If you fail the screening you are asked to leave.

It is the same criteria for staff. Let me tell you- many people are very unhappy about this.

But guess what, it’s not about you. It’s about the mother of 3 undergoing chemotherapy on the Cancer Ward that has zero immune system.

It’s about the 30 week old NICU baby that has already had to fight every single day of its life to stay alive.

It’s about the favourite uncle that just had a massive stroke and is just barely out of the woods.

It’s about the father of 2 who just had open heart surgery and has a long road of healing ahead.

It’s about the grandmother who had broken her hip last week and is just beginning to mobilize again.

It’s about protecting them. Not about punishing you.

I was yelled at on multiple occasions over the past couple of days while I worked my shifts.

“Well this isn’t fair- Yes, I travelled recently but I don’t have symptoms!”

“I have other places to be- the restricted hours are going to make me late”

“You will never understand until you have children!!”

“You have got to be kidding me- I’ll have to wait in the car while my family member visits?!”

I’ll say it again- IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU.

I have a 13 month old son, I have elderly grandparents, I have people in my family who are very susceptible to getting ill and have a very difficult time recovering when they do get sick- I do not want them to contract this virus- and they aren’t currently hospitalized.

People in the hospital are already immuno-compromised, one more virus-especially this particular one- could KILL them.

This is a matter of life and death. Stop being selfish and think of everyone else who is already fighting for their lives here.

Ashley McIntosh-Barton, nurse at Southlake Regional Health Centre in Canada

Yell at me? Fine. I can take it. I’m human, and I understand your frustrations. Honestly, we wish you could be with your loved ones, it decreases anxiety in the patients, facilitates healing and most definitely makes our jobs as busy nurses just a little bit easier. But policy is policy for a reason- it’s not for punishment I can promise you that.

Maybe try to see things from our perspective before totally losing self control- we honestly are just looking out for those who really need it right now.

Thank you.

This was written by Ashley McIntosh-Barton, a nurse, one of the brave front-liners fighting the corona virus. You can find the original post HERE.

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