Home Forums COVID-19 Pandemic: Bearing Witness, Telling our Story A New Kind of Patriotism Thoughts by Mark Lawrence Schrad. What takeaway do you see for DNP colleagues?

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    DNP Inc.

    A New Kind of Patriotism


    • This topic was modified 4 years, 2 months ago by DNP Inc..
    Linh Tran

    This topic by Mark Lawrence Schrad touches me on a different note. With this pandemic that is catastrophic in the Unites States compared to elsewhere, working in frontlines in a developed nation, it does make us wonder where did we go wrong, and about how can we educate community and prepare ourselves better for the future events. Back in march when the first cases were announced, California went into quarantine “shut down” stage, healthcare workers were praised as heroes for their commitment for patients care. Behind those appraisals were healthcare workers’ fear about entering a “war zone” we did not sign up for, not having enough protected personal equipments, and potential of brining harm home to our loved ones. The battle and patriotic act that we do were outfar for anything we would ever imagine would happen in our professional lifetime. Eventually, we had nurse managers at a New York most-hit hospital confirmed Covid death, and a NYC physician committed suicide. The patriotic act is such a graceful word to describe the chaos and pain we feel having colleagues admitted with Covid, of management not having enough governmental support for supplies, and lastly of how the community are not educated enough to trust the professionals at preventive stages. We are the top among developed countries with the most advanced healthcare system and military weapons, yet we are also the number one nation in confirmed cases. Let that sink in. So as DNP leaders, what patriotic feeling brings you about changes in your personal commitment to patient practice and changes to our healthcare system?

    Anastasia G Paolini

    This post is very touching. Working on the frontlines in this pandemic was a very tough time for me and my colleagues. I experienced the loss of co-workers and their family members due to them working as healthcare professionals during this pandemic. But this is not the first time I have come into contact with patients that had an infectious disease. I have had pt.’s with active TB, flu, and others and provided them nothing but the best care possible without even thinking about it. I think this pandemic has shown the selflessness, dedication, and courage of those working in healthcare at the bedside. Although I am not sure I can compare it to getting actively shot at such as those who serve our country in a war. This is because the odds of dying from a gunshot/IUD explosion on a battlefield versus contracting Covid is different. Highlighting the sacrifices and risks healthcare professionals take is way overdue and a service to our country in a different way. The United States rallied together to highlight those people who continued to brave the virus ( police officers, grocery store employees etc..) and it was nothing short of heartwarming. I think the community will now carry a new appreciation for people working in these professions and it is a beautiful thing.

    Ernst Uychocde

    Almost two years later and this post still rings true until today. Being a healthcare working is rewarding, but also very exhaustive. Between the vaccination and booster roll-outs, new variants, nursing staff shortages, and PPE shortages, these past two years have taken a toll on the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual well-beings of nurses and other healthcare providers.

    For the sake of continuing the metaphor, it is saddening to see that the enemy is still out there two years later, but now taking on new forms. Yes, this round we are equipped with enough weaponry and protective gear, but the lack of military staff we have in the front lines is very apparent. Moreover, some of our soldiers have been wounded, yet they are still required to show up and fight the battle.

    Having only worked as a registered nurse for a year and a couple of months so far, during a pandemic, I feel both experienced and inexperienced in the field. I have learned so much about healthcare beyond the clinical practice, but at the same time feel like I still do not know anything because things are constantly changing on a day-to-day basis. But I guess this is what was meant when I was told as a nursing student that an important characteristic that nurses have in common is adaptability.

    However, how much change can our bodies and minds as human beings take during a stressful and seemingly never-ending period of time such as this?

    I really love being a registered nurse and aiding my patients get back to their optimal level of health, but there are days where it seems like I can’t even take care of myself. How am I expected to take care of others?

    Meredith Coulibaly

    I’m going to take on a controversial topic, here we go. It makes me sad that at the onset of the pandemic, nurses and doctors were lauded as heroes (which we were), but now, some are being fired for declining to take the vaccine. The CDC has (finally!) released data which demonstrated that natural immunity is 2.8 times as effective in preventing hospitalization and 3.3 to 4.7 times as effective in preventing Covid infection compared with vaccination. Some doctors and nurses knew this from the beginning, and knew that a vaccine was unnecessary for them if they had already recovered from covid. If the goal is to prevent the spread of Covid from staff to patients, staff who have recovered from Covid are much less likely to contract and spread the virus. So why are those staff being fired? Are vaccine mandates really about public health? Please share your thoughts, DNP colleagues.

    Ricky Bonar

    A battle against the catastrophe brought forth by the pandemic is one way of looking at this. I do admit, especially during the first wave of the pandemic, a certain level of enthusiasm mixed with feelings of pride and awesomeness welled up inside me. Many a nurses have also taken the liberty to indulge in an opportunity to engage in heroism that is further magnified by the devastation left behind by the pandemic; it has been an unprecedented time in history. Sadly, when one steps back and observes only to discover the profound polarization of this new kind of patriotism. On one hand you have the perception of heroism through solidarity with science and compliance of a civilized social system, on the other hand there is also a similar perception of heroism and righteousness through acts of courage to preserve individualism and personal freedom. Strangely, what I thought is something empirical in nature; something which requires an empirical solution as in hard science has catalyzed the rupture of deep seated principles which seem poetic if not philosophical in nature.

    Alma Rodriguez

    When I think of patriotism I think of a lot of people, especially people that served our military as the first statement read. There are other words that come to mind before patriotism to describe nurses, such as caregivers, compassionate workers, strong and intelligent. There were a few words to describe nurses when the pandemic began that a lot of the media, hospital management and our community members used to describe healthcare workers such as heroes, superheroes, amazing people, among others. And then there were statements after the pandemic had been around for a while which were very discouraging to read and feel like i was a part of such as “From hero to zero” when nurses and other healthcare members started to get fired for standing up for their medical freedoms. “You signed up for this, suck it up” when we expressed our concern over the lack and shortage of PPE. “You don’t know what you’re talking about” as we learned more about covid and regulations started changing leading our community to mistrust healthcare. Patriotism isn’t a word that I would have considered during these times, however, unless you have personally witnessed the death a lot of nurses have encountered, along with the grief they carry after working with so many of these people that unfortunately did not make it, patriotism would not be a word to describe healthcare workers, in this case nurses. After reflecting on these past years, and how the pandemic has personally affected my life, I would say patriotism and pride are absolutely some of the words I will start to include in my vocabulary due to the time, care and effort we put into our community to ensure the safety of others when at times we did not know exactly how this would personally affect us in more than one way.


    Mr. Schrad,
    This title had brought me here by sparking my interest in patriotism. Reading your article, it is clear that you are very biased and one sided in your point of view about this topic, biting the hand of those who fed you this freedom of expression and speech. Patriotism ideology was born thousands of years ago based on the Roman word “patria”, which is associated with the love of law and common good, from the people and for the people, sacrificing their own good for freedom to resist corruption and tyranny. Your idea of patriotism is driven from limited knowledge with poor interpretation of patriotism itself which is defensive in nature, blatantly confusing it with extreme nationalism. All of the occupations fore-mentioned are not new class heroes and have always been patriotic, just as patriotic as cops and military personnel. Although both are facing dangerous threats, equating the risk of fighting in a combat/war zone with traps, bullets, explosions, and less than adequate physical/mental welfare with the risk of fighting virus with less than 0.5% mortality rate is rather halfwitted and injudicious. I’m curious to know based on your standpoint, are the “doctors, nurses, pharmacists, teachers, caregivers, store clerks, utility workers, small business owners, and employees” still a true patriot that deserve a statue and corporate discount if they decide to make their own healthcare decision and refuse to be vaccinated because of overwhelming science that prove the presence of natural immunity, overwhelming number of infection even after receiving all shots and boosters, the lack of further study and short/long-term effect of the vaccine, or simply because they don’t feel the need to? If you do believe they are still heroes even without the vaccine, kindly use your platform to advocate against firing, discrimination, and loss of jobs and business of these heroes, especially those receiving martial law treatments in Canada currently. Furthermore, it is absurd to degrade the military to prove healthcare workers’ heroism, when both purpose is to serve, support, and strengthen the country. Your idea of improving healthcare while demilitarizing the country is comparable to cutting Samson’s hair; it is counterintuitive, illogical, and creating a weakness. I sure hope we can all continue to enjoy this freedom of speech and decision guaranteed by the constitution. Greetings from a nurse!

    Rania Qaqish

    Thank you for posting this topic by Mark Lawrence Schrad. It is definitely nice to read this after what healthcare professionals have been through during the past two years of this pandemic. I am an emergency room registered nurse and have worked in the ER during this whole pandemic. Working in the ER meant we were the frontline and protection of the rest of the hospital. During a time when so many people were even scared to leave their home, we came to work and dealt with the unknown. During the beginning of the pandemic our lobby was empty, everyone was too scared to come. However, right after the holidays of 2020, we got our first bad surge in California. I would send most patients up to the ICU maxed out on high-flow nasal cannula and with a 15L nonrebreather on top. It didn’t occur to me that most of those patients did not survive. It wasn’t until I lost my father in law to COVID in September of 2021 that I realized how deadly and devastating this disease was. Overall, this disease changed my personal and work life dramatically. All along this journey, some patients called COVID a hoax, others refused to wear masks. Everyone loved their “health care heroes” in the beginning and that slowly died down. It’s nice to see this post and recognition. I definitely agree we deserve all the benefits of the military. Unfortunately, I am not sure we will ever see the appreciation and compensation we deserve. As for the takeaway for DNP colleagues, this pandemic showed the growing need of DNP educated healthcare providers for an overwhelmed healthcare system. APRN’s can play a vital role in providing healthcare services to different patient populations. I appreciate everyone in healthcare and hope you guys have found some peace during this time of chaos!

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 3 months ago by Rania Qaqish.
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