STERNBERG: One Word Capture Mood: Sad

LIFE IN THE TIME OF COVID-19

One Word Capture Mood: Sad

The following were some of the definitions of the word “sad” from dictionary.com.

Richard Sternberg, retired Bassett Hospital orthopedic surgeon, is providing his professional perspective weekly during the COVID-19
threat. A village trustee,
he resides in Cooperstown.

“Affected by unhappiness or grief; sorrowful or mournful, expressive of or characterized by sorrow, causing sorrow; somber, dark, or dull; drab; deplorably bad, sorry.” Thesauraus.com lists 46 synonyms for sad.

And I add an additional from other sources, pathetic. The following story is sad by almost all of these. This was originally reported by CNN.
Jodi Doering, an Emergency Room nurse in Dearing, S.D., out of severe frustration and feelings of being overwhelmed, tweeted Saturday that her patients were dying of COVID-19 but remained in denial of the pandemic’s existence.

She called it a horror movie that never ends. Besides treating patients who were dying and the stress that it caused her and her colleagues, they also faced the additional emotional toll of treating patients who despite being severely ill, who while dying, still refused to acknowledge that they had been infected with a virus that they said didn’t exist.

Patients on 100-percent oxygen would swear that it was not real and many would lash out at the nurses and doctors trying to help them for trying to convince them they were dying of COVID.
There were incidents of patients screaming that it was all a fraud and that the medical staff were only wearing PPE to confuse them, that there was no need for it, and demanding that they take it off.

Rather than communicating with their loved ones before they died, they would rant against anyone or anything that tried to convince them that they were critically ill with COVID.

Cases are skyrocketing in North and South Dakota currently at a rate that is the fastest in the nation.

In North Dakota, the Republican Gov. Doug Burgum pleaded with residents, “You don’t have to believe in COVID, you don’t have to believe in a certain political party or not, you don’t have to believe whether masks work or not. Just do it because you know one thing is very real. And that 100 percent of our (hospital) capacity is being used.”

On the other hand, Kristi Noem, governor of South Dakota, has continued to oppose mask mandates or closures and has joined in antagonism to mainstream medicine.
She hosted soon-to-be ex-President Donald Trump at a tightly packed Fourth of July celebration at Mount Rushmore. Even after the president acknowledged that he had COVID-19 last month, many of his supporters continue to refuse to acknowledge it is real.

Johns Hopkins University says that the Dakotas are currently the epicenter of the pandemic in the United States, according to their and the states own data.

Experts feel that the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, which attracted over 500,000 to South Dakota, and was encouraged by Governor Noem, was a major superspreader event.

Most of the half million did not wear masks and did not socially distance especially in bars and restaurants.

How do we stop this when so many won’t even believe it is real, or dangerous, and won’t begin to cooperate in the protection of themselves and their families?

Last night I was talking to a close friend, a college classmate who is a family physician in rural Wisconsin. He is over 65 and male like myself but otherwise has no risk factors.

He and his entire family sustained COVID-19 in October.
They are not sure what the sequence of spread was; he, his wife, and his step-daughter are all in healthcare. He said it was the sickest he ever felt.

I admit I, who has a total of seven risk factors, am scared that I may become infected. If so, I have a very significant fatality risk. Hopefully I can stay safe until there is a vaccine available to me.

I suppose I can take solace in the fact that between those that don’t believe the disease is real or that it can make them sick, and those who will refuse the vaccine, I stand a reasonable chance of getting it within six months.


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