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PROVIDING CARE IN A PANDEMIC: AN INTROSPECTIVE LOOK

After putting the kids to bed tonight and reflecting on this past week, I realized just how much the Coronavirus pandemic has affected me, my family and friends, my fellow healthcare colleagues, and especially my patients.  Each morning as I put on my scrubs and brushed my teeth, I would stare into the mirror in a foggy haze and contemplate what the new day would bring. Would I bring joy to someone’s life?  Would I be able to make someone laugh or ease their fears?  Would I answer all of their questions or heal their pain? Would I be the provider that tells them the news they never thought they’d hear?  Would I come in contact with COVID-19?

Because I live for my job as a nurse practitioner and am so passionate about caring for women and their children, I decided to kiss my loved ones good-bye every morning and tell them I would be home soon.  My son, Declan, would run to the door and hold up his pointer finger (which meant “one more hug Mommy”) as I backed out of the driveway.  If only those charming freckles on his nose knew I was already running late.  Then, I would drive to work in complete silence thinking of both the best and worst-case scenarios that could occur that day.   I also secretly enjoyed the lack of traffic and bus stops on my daily route to Kamm McKenzie OBGYN.  Once I got to the office and reviewed my schedule, I knew the hours ahead of me were not going to be easy.

The past few days, I’ve managed to educate patients and share information about Coronavirus (although not as much as I would’ve liked).  I assisted clinical staff with cleaning exam and ultrasound rooms.  I would work through lunch and stay after hours with the cleaning crew to make sure my lab results were given to patients in a timely manner, task notes from nurses were answered, and follow-up calls to patients were made.  I was able to give patients confirmation on the viability of a pregnancy they had longed for, while moments later fighting back tears and giving my condolences to others.  If I said I didn’t bring my work home, I’d be lying.  This job doesn’t always allow us to compartmentalize or debrief as well as we’d like to.  However, I feel that in those moments, it forces me to see that the glass is half full and to continuously have faith.

Being a healthcare professional during a pandemic is not something I prepared for or was even trained to do.  I feel lost in the dark at times (as I’m sure many of you feel this way too) and often get frustrated and angry about the uncertainty of it all.  To the patients I had the pleasure of caring for this week, I can’t thank you enough for the patience and understanding you’ve shown me… and even your unwavering honesty.  You continue to make me a better nurse practitioner and human being.  You challenge me, as well as support me. 

During this time, anxiety is high and tension is thick.  The staff at Kamm McKenzie has had to make very difficult decisions this week to protect its employees, the patients, as well as their families.  We ask and pray that you continue to trust in us as your medical providers, that we will provide the highest quality of care and keep you safe always. 

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Two Locations

Computer Drive Office
3805 Computer Drive
Raleigh, NC 27609
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Durant Medical Center
10880 Durant Road, Suite 224
Raleigh, NC 2761
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Wake Med - Main Campus