A nurse in British Columbia has shared her heartbreaking experience after losing a patient to the COVID-19 virus, as well as a plea for people to stay home and get their COVID-19 vaccination when possible.
Kendall Skuta is a registered nurse and has worked at BC’s Abbotsford Hospital for four years. She says that she was working at the COVID-19 ward approximately one month ago when a patient entered cardiac arrest.
“People ran from all over the hospital and rushed to get their PPE on so they could help,” she wrote on social media. “We were running supplies to and from the room, everyone was taking turns pounding on the patient’s chest, praying for a sign of life again.”
Skuta says that they performed CPR for 35 minutes, but the patient didn’t make it. She adds that he was under the age of 60 and didn’t have any previous respiratory or cardiac issues. He had even been transferred out of intensive care because his symptoms appeared to be improving.
“I’m sure his wife was sleeping well that night, knowing her husband was making progress,” says Skuta. “Instead, she was awoken by a phone call at 2 am with news that he had just died.”
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“The amount of death I’ve seen in the last year weighs on me every day. I can’t count the number of times I’ve run to a bathroom or an empty stock room to take five minutes to cry by myself behind my mask. But after those five minutes, I have to pick myself up and do my job.”
Skuta tells Daily Hive in an interview that it’s becoming increasingly difficult to stay in a good mental headspace, adding that the third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic is causing exhaustion and burnout.
“I hear it from all the healthcare workers I work with, we’re all exhausted,” she says. “I feel that the general public could do a much better job following current restrictions put in place.”
Skuta says she constantly asks herself when the COVID-19 pandemic will end and when people will take the virus seriously. Her message to Canadians is to “stay home, wear a mask, and get vaccinated if you’re eligible.”
“We are all exhausted,” Skuta says. “I don’t know how much more pain my heart can take.”