Southeast Health nurse describes life amid battle with COVID-19

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DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — For months Wiregrass residents have watched as the coronavirus has continued changing our lives.

On March 18, 2020, the deadly virus was confirmed in Dothan. Since that time, local healthcare workers have fought against the virus—sacrificing their own health and lives.

“They (hospital staff members) don’t think anything about gowning and gloving and going into a room to the aid of these patients,” Southeast Health RN Joni Eubanks said. “Our nurses are amazing. They have come together, other departments that are not fully functional right now due to the pandemic, those nurses are stepping out.”

First-year nurses, seasoned professionals, and even retired healthcare workers are coming together in a unified fight.

“Our entire community inside this hospital has stepped up,” Eubanks said.

However, the rally is not only located inside the hospital.

“The community outside of the hospital has stepped up,” Eubanks explained. “They have showered us with masks, with hats, with food, a lot of gifts, and a lot of prayers.”

It is that love that is helping medical professionals cope with some of their own personal challenges.

“They’re not going home,” Eubanks told WDHN. “They haven’t seen their kids or their husbands or their wives in weeks. Whether it be physicians or nurses or our CRNA’s, just some of our staff isn’t getting to go home because of the fear of infecting their family.”

As of this report, Southeast Health is reporting 44 cases of COVID-19 in the hospital. Nine people have died and 33 in-patients are awaiting results.

Some health officials predict the United States will see its peak in COVID-19 cases sometime this week.

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