Nurses on the frontline of COVID-19 pandemic

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Nurses are on the frontline of Guam's fight against the coronavirus.

On the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic, our island’s nurses are working overtime. They are spending more time on the clock and less time with their families so that you can stay home with your family.

They don’t wear capes but they are the unsung heroes of the coronavirus pandemic. Nurses on the front lines are risking exposure to COVID-19 to help those in need of medical care. PNC spoke to nurses with the American Medical Center who shared their experiences on the frontline.

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“I’m not going to sugar coat it, it’s been scary. We know that at this time most especially with our community, we know that our positions are needed, most especially our facility and our providers. And so we’ve also imparted a lot to our staff members who are afraid. We told them if you’re afraid it’s okay you can step down. So, a lot of our other team members have really stepped up and it tells a lot about their character,” said nurse Pua Senior.

The tiring work on the frontline of the pandemic has impacted healthcare workers but they push through, motivated by the health needs of others.

“I think that does play a huge psychological role in a lot of healthcare workers. For me, personally, it has been tiring. During the day, though, I think you kind of have to prime yourself. On my drive to work, I’m telling myself what I’m doing is very important. You know how I feel is important as well but I just tend to kind of set my feelings aside and know that someone else needs my help at this time,” the nurse said.

Across the nation and on Guam, nurses are working tirelessly and to help combat work burnout the nurses at AMC come together before their shift to prepare for what the day may bring as patient levels have risen, bringing in 30 to 40 additional patients a day.

When PNC visited the clinic today the waiting room was empty but behind the scenes, the hustle and bustle can be observed of nurses attending to patient matters, showing that their line of work is not for the weary.

“I think at the end of the day the adrenaline that’s been rushing through, coursing throughout your body for the whole day … it starts to die down and you get home and we are exhausted,” the nurse said.

“It also affects the families at home that have been waiting for us. You know, I have my children at home, my husband is at home … he’s been doing such a wonderful job with keeping the house clean and getting dinner on the table and I’m so grateful for that and thankful. But I know even for him he’s quite scared and he’s told me before, you know I’m very worried about you at work, most especially with what you’re doing … but you know I try to reassure him as much as I can about the precautions that we are taking at work,” the nurse added.

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Jolene Toves
Jolene joined the PNC team in 2017, as a producer, co-anchor and investigative reporter covering law enforcement, courts and crimes. Notable coverage includes the Ehlert case, the Mark Torre Jr. trial, the Allan Agababa trial, exclusive pieces on the Life of a Drug Dealer/Addict, and Life behind bars...the story of Honofre Chargualaf and Kevin Cruz. In 2019, she was promoted to Assistant News Director and Lead Anchor. From 2015 to 2017 she served as Public Relations and Promotions Manager, for the Hotel Nikko Guam handling local radio and advertorial promotions, as well as produced and directed tv commercials for the hotel. Prior to this she worked with KUAM for three years as a reporter and segment host. She began her journalism career in 2012, working with Glimpses of Guam contributing to the Guam Business Magazine, R&R magazine, MDM magazine and the Marianas Business Journal.