COVID deniers PLEASE READ - this nurse's account of NHS frontline will break ...

The NHS is literally functioning on the good will of staff, overtime and coffee, supported by an army of NHS volunteers and St John Ambulance. Many of my colleagues have themselves had COVID, some have been hospitalised and some have very sadly died. We are short-staffed and still some 30,000 nurses short. We are trying to make ends meet and provide quality care to patients. We are tired, drained and it feels like after finishing one campaign, we are thrust straight into another.

Very recently I worked an extra 12 hour shift in my local vaccination hub providing the new Pfizer COVID vaccine. During the shift I caught up with lots of my friends and colleagues who attended for the vaccination and what touched me were the stories.

I hadn’t really thought about it before in the hustle and bustle of a pandemic, but during the slightly more relaxed atmosphere of a vaccination centre, it struck me that many of us have tough and challenging stories from the front line.

The look in their eyes above the seam of their masks, the hint of a tear, the slight look away to avoid eye contact or the moment of silence when a colleague goes deep in thought, gives away the pain they carry.

After, I watched the latest ‘Casualty’ episode with a surprising amount of emotion, I felt my own eyes well up.

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I too have ‘made that call’ to a family member informing them their loved one is critical.

I too have found that acutely unwell patient on the floor.

I too have seen experienced staff cry under the pressure.

I never thought I would be watching a programme based on a moment in time I have been involved with.

So yes, there was a certain amount of pride that I’ve been doing my bit and I’m proud to have been working in the NHS during the pandemic.

I’m not sure what this says about me, but there is no where else I would have rather been,

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