Chinanews.com, December 2 According to the report of Overseas Chinese Newspaper, the coronavirus epidemic has previously hit urban areas of the United States on a large scale, but now, the surge in cases in autumn is making medical resources in rural areas more and more strained. Doctors in small hospitals are busy and in a state of emergency almost all day.
Scotland County Hospital is a small 25-bed hospital located in the rural area of northeast Missouri. Many of the behaviors of doctor Shane Wilson’s bed inspection are common during the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, he wears a mask and gloves and disinfects his opponent’s parts when entering and leaving each ward.
But here, one thing is different from other places. Born in this small town with a population of only 1,800, Wilson knows most of the patients.
One of the patients was Wilson’s physical education teacher. Another patient fell ill while harvesting soybeans, and his harvesting work was not completed. In November, Wilson also treated his father. At present, 74-year-old Wilson has recovered from the novel coronavirus infection.
Alisa Kigar, director of public relations at Scottish county hospitals, said that the area is very remote, and the nearest McDonald’s and Wal-Mart are both an hour’s drive away. People come to this hospital from six surrounding counties, usually to treat injuries, chest pain and influenza while doing farm work or exercise. Generally speaking, there will be enough wards here.
But now it’s different, the hospital has 142 full-time employees, but only about six doctors and 75 nurses, and now they’re in crisis. The number of COVID-19 cases in the region has rapidly increased, and beds have become very tense.
Doctors at Scotland County Hospital have to make difficult and heartbreaking decisions when deciding which patients to accept. When some patients with less severe symptoms are sent home, Wilson also was told, “If the condition worsens, we still need to go back to the hospital, but we have no place to place you, and there is no place to transfer you.”
At the same time, because of the serious shortage of staff, the hospital appealed to all people with medical experience, including retirees, to assist in the work.
Elizabeth Guffey, the head nurse of the hospital, said that nurses have to work 24 hours a week. Guffy sometimes chooses to sleep in the hospital rather than go home to rest between shifts. “We’re in a state of emergency almost 100% of the time, and everyone needs to be prepared,” she said.
She also said that it was particularly difficult to see her relatives and friends struggling with the disease, while a large number of people in the community did not take the epidemic seriously. “We are busy taking care of patients in the hospital, but we hear people outside saying that this is a scam,” Guffy said.
Glen Cowell, the president of the European Commission, was not sure whether there was a virus before he was knocked down by the novel coronavirus. Cowell, 68, was in good health before. Around November 11, he began to feel uncomfortable. Four days later, he tested positive for the novel coronavirus, and then his condition gradually worsened. On November 18, an ambulance took him to the emergency room. He chose to go home after receiving treatment in the hospital.
“They only have one bed left,” Cowell said. “I don’t think I’m sick enough to take up a bed.” But soon, his symptoms worsened. After being sent to the hospital by ambulance again, he stayed in the hospital for a long time. He is unsure where he contracted the virus, but admits that he is not cautious about it.