The COVID Chronicles: Tampa General Hospital opens doors, health care workers share their stories

Coronavirus

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Tampa General Hospital is sharing with the public a unique and powerful behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like to work during a pandemic.

But, these stories are different.

They’re unedited. They’re stark. They’re up close and personal. These stories are told by those on the front lines.

Workers at Tampa General Hospital have seen it all – firsthand. Every day, every week, every month. All of it, since the pandemic began.

These are ‘The COVID Chronicles.’

Tampa General Hospital wanted to show the public what life is like for members of their team – a team they consider family.

The images in the video are emotional, and the words are powerful. It is a stark reality, rarely seen in public.

Holly Bailey is a chaplain resident, and this is her first year working full-time. She looks directly into the camera and explains what it’s like to be with families who are saying their final good-byes.

“I escorted his family members for their one-time half-hour end-of-life visit. I was there for them in that COVID room as they said goodbye,” Bailey said. “All I could think was, this is your last time seeing him and there’s a lot of complex emotions knowing how he got sick.”

Dr. David Wein is TGH’s chief of emergency medicine. In the video, he talks about being dedicated to the task but also being exhausted with the recent rise in case numbers.

“Situation feels worse than it was at any other point. We have patients we’re taking care of in the waiting room, admitting them to the hospital,” Dr. Wein said.

Bailey echoed that sentiment.

“I think we’re all exhausted,” she said. “The staff is exhausted.”

As TGH opens its doors, health care workers are opening their hearts, telling personal stories about living their lives while trying to save lives at the same time.

“Our whole team is tired, struggling to make sure we have enough people to care for all of the patients who arrive,” Dr. Wein.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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