Nursing in Covid Units

Submitted by Mcgil Ingram School of Nursing
October 20, 2020

As a Candidate for the Nursing Profession, I was barely out of cegep when I started working in COVID units, having been listening to press conferences on the radio during my last days of stage, I was scared to go straight to the frontlines after graduating. I did not know what to expect, first day in we visited the unit, all recently modified for the separation of cold zones and red zones. The walls were made of coroplast and tape, the nursing station was surrounded will sheets of plastic everywhere. 1 unit was now 2, the nursing team had to be split in half, half in the red zones where everyone dreaded being plced and the other half in the cold zone. The facilities of the unit also had to be remodled so that both sides had acces to material, the only way we could communicate with our colleagues on the red side was through a small drive-through like window. The halls we narrow and the walls were full of cart and vital sign machine leaving very little place for our patient to walk in the hall at the same time as the nursing cart. It was claustrophobic and chaotic becaue everyone had to addapt to this “new normal”, going to work was not as exciting and the days were long going in and out of PPE for 8 or more hours a day. Nurses were calling in sick, constant impositions gave us 16hour shift with less than eight hours to rest in between. I was very tough but when we saw our first patient leave on foot after 3 weeks of dealing with covid , it gave us a boost and everytime someone would recover it was another pat on the back and encouraging words to continu the good work we were doing.