Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Saturday, March 21, 2020

"I have patients in their early 40s and, yeah, I was kind of shocked. I'm seeing people who look relatively healthy with a minimal health history, and they are completely wiped out, like they've been hit by a truck. This is knocking out what should be perfectly fit, healthy people. Patients will be on minimal support, on a little bit of oxygen, and then all of a sudden, they go into complete respiratory arrest, shut down and can't breathe at all."




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As of Friday, Louisiana was reporting 479 confirmed cases of COVID-19, one of the highest numbers in the country. Ten people had died. The majority of cases are in New Orleans, which now has one confirmed case for every 1,000 residents. New Orleans had held Mardi Gras celebrations just two weeks before its first patient, with more than a million revelers on its streets.

I spoke to a respiratory therapist there, whose job is to ensure that patients are breathing well. He works in a medium-sized city hospital's intensive care unit.

Since last week, he's been running ventilators for the sickest COVID-19 patients. Many are relatively young, in their 40s and 50s, and have minimal, if any, preexisting conditions in their charts. He is overwhelmed, stunned by the manifestation of the infection, both its speed and intensity. The ICU where he works has essentially become a coronavirus unit. He estimates that his hospital has admitted dozens of confirmed or presumptive coronavirus patients. About a third have ended up on ventilators.

"I worked a long stretch of days last week, and I watched it go from this novelty to a serious issue. We had one or two patients at our hospital, and then five to 10 patients, and then 20 patients. Every day, the intensity kept ratcheting up. More patients, and the patients themselves are starting to get sicker and sicker. When it first started, we all had tons of equipment, tons of supplies, and as we started getting more patients, we started to run out. They had to ration supplies. At first we were trying to use one mask per patient. Then it was just: You get one mask for positive patients, another mask for everyone else. And now it's just: You get one mask.

"I work 12-hour shifts. Right now, we are running about four times the number of ventilators than we normally have going. We have such a large volume of patients, but it's really hard to find enough people to fill all the shifts. The caregiver-to-patient ratio has gone down, and you can't spend as much time with each patient, you can't adjust the vent settings as aggressively because you're not going into the room as often. And we're also trying to avoid going into the room as much as possible to reduce infection risk of staff and to conserve personal protective equipment."

I encourage everyone to read this first hand account of what's already happening in hospitals all across America and will only get worse as the days, weeks, and likely months pass. We are not prepared for the human destruction this virus is going to wreak through our society and it chills me to my core consciously understanding what is about to transpire in the coming days.

#1 | Posted by tonyroma at 2020-03-21 03:50 PM | Reply

"It's called acute respiratory distress syndrome, ARDS. That means the lungs are filled with fluid. And it's notable for the way the X-ray looks: The entire lung is basically whited out from fluid. Patients with ARDS are extremely difficult to oxygenate. It has a really high mortality rate, about 40%. The way to manage it is to put a patient on a ventilator. The additional pressure helps the oxygen go into the bloodstream.

"Normally, ARDS is something that happens over time as the lungs get more and more inflamed. But with this virus, it seems like it happens overnight.

"When someone has an infection, I'm used to seeing the normal colors you'd associate with it: greens and yellows. The coronavirus patients with ARDS have been having a lot of secretions that are actually pink because they're filled with blood cells that are leaking into their airways. They are essentially drowning in their own blood and fluids because their lungs are so full. So we're constantly having to suction out the secretions every time we go into their rooms."

And all of these people are and will suffer without loved ones around them, totally alone with unfortunate others going through the same fate.

#2 | Posted by tonyroma at 2020-03-21 03:55 PM | Reply

His hospital had not prepared for this volume before the virus first appeared. One physician had tried to raise alarms, asking about negative pressure rooms and ventilators. Most staff concluded that he was overreacting. "They thought the media was overhyping it," the respiratory therapist told me. "In retrospect, he was right to be concerned."

That's what people were told to believe by Trump and his media lackeys.

They'll have the blood of tens if not hundreds of thousands of deaths on their hands before this is over.

#3 | Posted by jpw at 2020-03-22 12:01 AM | Reply

social distancing and isolation are the best ways to avoid the plague.

#4 | Posted by Tor at 2020-03-22 01:09 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

"...social distancing and isolation ..."

Did you rig up a basket for your mom to lower food to you?

#5 | Posted by SheepleSchism at 2020-03-22 03:44 AM | Reply

This just goes to show you that you should not p!$$ off the democrats. Trumplethinskin was wrong to doubt the degree of our commitment to do whatever it takes to get him out of office. Who's the sore loser now eh?

Yesh that whole impeachment thing was just a deflection... something to occupy your attention while we launched our nefarious plan to RUUUUUUUUULLLLLLEEEEEEE the WOOOOOOORRRRLLLLDDDDD and make everyone a socialist.


Worked too Trumplethinskin has promised us free medical and MONEY!!!!

Deplorables fold so easily.

#6 | Posted by RightisTrite at 2020-03-22 05:16 AM | Reply

Go out and get it sheeple.

It's nothing. What are you worried about?

#7 | Posted by jpw at 2020-03-22 09:18 AM | Reply

Go out and get it sheeple. It's nothing. What are you worried about? #7 | Posted by jpw

Might be more difficult for Sheeple to find in Russia. Apparently Putin fell for the Dem ruse and shut everything down, so Russia is claiming a much lower spread than here in the States.

#8 | Posted by censored at 2020-03-22 12:22 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

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