SPENCER, W.Va. (AP) — Chania Batten has as much reason as anybody to feel pandemic fatigue.

She spent many months as a nursing assistant at a rural Roane County hospital, West Virginia. There, she answered questions and dispelled misinformation.

Batten shivers when he thinks of another year in which the pandemic could be averted.

“It is frustrating,” said the mother of two young children. “We all want to get back to our lives.”

Just one year after first vaccines had been approved, West Virginia became the next victim. briefly led the nationThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that the state is responsible for getting the shots. The state however, quickly reacted. hit a wall of resistanceIts ranking started to slide. It’s unclear how far it fell because of discrepancies between state and federal figures, but the struggle in Roane County suggests there is plenty of room for improvement.

Only about 45% of the county’s population is fully vaccinated against the coronavirus. Nearly one-third of the state’s 55 counties are under 50%, according to the CDC.

Reasons vary for residents’ struggles to embrace the vaccine. Batten is one of those who are fighting the long and difficult battle to convince the unpersuasible.

“There’s still, honestly, a lot of questions about the vaccine and what’s in it,” she said. “There’s a lot of people who are still scared because there’s not enough information out there for them. You have all that paranoia.”

With the sudden emergence of an omicron-type virus in the U.S., there is greater urgency to encourage people to use the most effective method for mitigating this virus.

The stress levels in state hospitals are still high. They warn that the number of patients is increasing and staffing levels shrinking. According to projections, the holiday season’s virus hospitalizations will surpass the September record of over 1,000.

Roane General Hospital is the location of Roane County’s main COVID-19 vaccine clinic. It can be found about an hour north from Charleston, the capital of South Carolina. It’s perched on a hillside in Spencer, population 2,000, where Bing Crosby’s “White Christmas” and other holiday songs blare out of speakers throughout the town square. There are 14,000 people living in the 484-square mile (1,250 km) county.

Batten worked in the hospital as an additional nurse, and sometimes she was the sole staff member at the drive-thru. Sometimes, Batten had as many as 12 vehicles on the line.

“It can become overwhelming,” Batten said, holding a clipboard in the chilly December air. “But it’s my job.”

Batten said she still likes the work, and if she had to she’d go door to door trying to convince people to get the shots. It seems like not much is getting through in West Virginia.

Republican governor. Jim Justice tried giving away vaccines, and appeared with Babydog the bulldog. Through drawings, he has donated hundreds of thousands to vacinated citizens. He presented a $50,000 check last month to Roane County’s middle school in an effort to motivate students and teachers to become vaccinated.

The hospital’s marketing campaign on the importance of COVID-19 shots includes daily messages on social media, radio advertising and physician testimonials. But hospital CEO Doug Bentz said he’s not sure how those messages are interpreted.

“In fact, I think sometimes the media hurts things because people are so dug in politically,” Bentz said in his office recently. “Instead of making a rational decision, they feel like they’ve got to stand on some principle. There’s a lot of misinformation out there. And unfortunately I think there’s just not the trust that we have in our government, in the media, for people to believe it.”

It is evident how much nursing has suffered. In 2020 alone, 1,700 nurses opted not to renewThey can get their West Virginia licenses.

Batten, who recently recovered from a bout with the virus herself, doesn’t expect to join those who stop trying.

“You’re still coming out here and working and doing your job, but then there’s still people not wanting to come and get vaccinated,” Batten said. “Or they don’t see what other people are going through, especially people who have lost loved ones in the hospital.”

Despite the effort to spread the word, a lot of people don’t even know the outdoor clinic is available. Batten says people ask her about the vaccine when she’s working inside the hospital. Other people face challenges due to their age, or because they have transportation issues.

Then there is the resistance. Some people refuse to be vaccinated, whether they are motivated by moral, political, or personal reasons.

Roane General is a non-profit hospital that has 25 beds for acute care. November the hospital dedicated an expansionThese facilities are estimated to have cost $28 Million.

However, they are still at risk from the latest strain of the virus.

“I don’t think the general public understands what’s going on inside the walls of the hospitals, inside the emergency rooms and inside the inpatient care floors,” Bentz said. “It’s a different world. We have very limited resources at Roane. There are few specialists. With the limited resources we have, we’re being asked to provide ICU-level, high-acuity care. It’s not always ideal. But we have no choice.”

Source: HuffPost.com.

Share Your Comment Below

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here