Health care workers struggle during COVID-19 pandemic

Joe Gentry
[email protected]
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused an uproar and conflict for almost everyone around the
world in numerous ways. This epidemic has not only impacted people’s jobs, but the way people
live their daily lives in general. People can’t live their normal daily life now due to procedures
like the stay at home order or full lockdown.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted many jobs and employers in negative ways, health
care workers are still having to work through the virus and under new procedures.
Allison Gentry works as a physical therapist for Liberty Home care. Gentry goes to her patients’
houses and works with each one to give them the physical therapy they need. She says working
in her field during the pandemic has not been easy but could be a lot worse.
“I am more worried about the ones working in places like hospitals and grocery stores,” Gentry
said. “Those workers are having direct contact with numerous patients and customers that may or
may not have the virus.”
According to Gentry, the employees are having to follow precautions just like other businesses
operating during the pandemic. Her company added steps she has to take before she goes out and
visits each one of her patients. These precautions were put into place to help prevent and ensure
the spread of the coronavirus doesn’t get out of hand for the safety of the workers visiting the
patients, and the patients themselves.
“Each morning before work I am required to contact my clinical manager and report to them my
temperature for that morning and reassure them, I have not traveled outside of the country within
the last 14 days,” Gentry said.
According to Gentry, she calls each of her patients in the morning to set up times for each visit as
part of basic procedure. Due to the new precautions for COVID-19, she’s required to ask her
patients a list of questions concerning the virus.
She asks her patients “if they have recently traveled anywhere where COVID-19 transmission
has been confirmed, if they have been in close contact with anyone that has traveled to a place
where COVID-19 has been confirmed and if they have been in contact with someone under
investigation for the virus or someone who is ill with a respiratory infection.”
She also has to ask if they have any symptoms of a respiratory infection. If they have a fever
greater than 100.4 F and if they have a cough, sore throat and shortness of breath. This procedure
needs to be followed by all employees of Liberty Home Care.
“If patients answer yes to any of the questions and yes to two or more symptoms then we have to
instruct them to contact their healthcare provider for follow up prior to making a home visit,”
Gentry said.
According to Gentry, the number of patients she usually sees has dropped since the awakening of
COVID-19. She says some are being cautious and not wanting to be visited just so they are not
putting themselves at risk of getting the virus.
“This has negatively affected the amount of work for me tremendously,” Gentry said.
Gentry says it has been a struggle trying to get a full week of visits which can negatively affect
her paycheck.
Gentry’s boyfriend Michael Davis said “I can see the stress it causes her not having enough
patients to get a full paycheck, but many people are getting laid off of work right now due to the
virus and not able to work at all. It’s a blessing if you’re able to work during these times but also
Working during this global pandemic can be tough no matter what profession you’re in but it can
also be tough for the people that have been laid off or just not able to work due to circumstances
that they can’t help. COVID-19 has not only stirred up multiple issues with employment but has
also opened up numerous problems for the entire world’s daily life.