July 1, 2021 -- For New Yorkers, March 11 to May 2, 2020, was astir decidedly the worst clip of the pandemic.
Nearly 19,000 radical died of COVID-19 successful New York City during those weeks, which translates to implicit 350 deaths per time and much than 1 decease each 5 minutes. No 1 experienced the chaotic aboriginal days of the pandemic much than the city’s indispensable workers, including those connected the beforehand lines astatine Mount Sinai Hospital.
And, successful The Surge astatine Mount Sinai, a documentary streaming connected discovery+ today, you’ll beryllium transported into the hospital’s intensive attraction units and conscionable respective patients hospitalized aboriginal on, arsenic good arsenic the heroic Mount Sinai ICU doctors, nurses, and enactment staff.
To find retired however his unit is doing and what helium thought astir the film, we interviewed David L. Reich, MD, president of Mount Sinai, 1 of the country’s largest and astir overwhelmed wellness attraction systems, via Zoom. Read connected for his thoughts connected COVID-19, the documentary, and what worries him astir close now.
WebMD: When did you cognize we were successful occupation with this virus?
Reich: Late February. I’m fortunate to beryllium connected with colleagues successful Italy, and the messages of desperation started coming done during that time. It was precise frightening. They explained that this isn’t conscionable a respiratory microorganism and that it overwhelms hospitals and staff. They told maine to effort to beryllium ready.
WebMD: The movie truly delves into the posttraumatic accent disorder (PTSD) your squad is inactive feeling. How overmuch are you focusing connected this today?
Reich: We’re blessed to person Dr. Dennis Charney arsenic the dean of the Icahn School of Medicine astatine Mount Sinai. He’s an adept successful resilience, and helium jumped connected this due to the fact that these issues are foremost connected our minds. We precocious created the Center for Stress, Resilience, and Personal Growth to assistance our unit recover. This microorganism was similar a war, and we cognize from PTSD related to wartime that PTSD has phases and tin past a agelong time. The hardest things for our unit was the fearfulness that they would beryllium infected oregon bring the corruption home. Then determination was the information that, with this virus, our patients were dying unsocial without household members present. The unit stepped in, doing FaceTime with household members who were saying goodbye. Our chaplains couldn’t beryllium successful the infirmary so, if the families requested it, the staff, particularly our nurses, said prayers astatine the infinitesimal of death. We were a surrogate for those families who couldn’t beryllium determination astatine the astir critically affectional infinitesimal successful life, which is erstwhile you suffer a loved one. To measurement successful astatine that infinitesimal was thing that changed each of america forever.
WebMD: What worries you astir present that we’re successful this signifier of the COVID-19 pandemic? Is the delta variant connected your mind?
Reich: I’m disquieted due to the fact that the Greek alphabet has a batch of letters. I’m not being glib, but what I’m saying is that arsenic agelong arsenic this microorganism is spreading arsenic it is passim the satellite mostly unchecked, each azygous corruption is simply a accidental for the microorganism to mutate and to germinate into thing that is much transmissible and perchance into thing that’s much deadly. We person a existent hazard successful the world, and we person to deliberation globally present astir however we assistance different nations that don’t person the resources that we spot successful Western Europe and the United States and get arsenic galore vaccinations to arsenic galore radical arsenic possible.
Otherwise, a vaccine-evading variant could emerge, and past each the hard enactment we’ve done with vaccinations, adjacent if we person to travel up with a booster program, it’s going to beryllium truly hard if we extremity up with a vaccine evader. Complacency is not an enactment close now.
WebMD: The movie is definite to punctual immoderate hard memories. Is it hard for you to ticker it?
Reich: I spot it otherwise -- I consciousness truthful amazingly arrogant of however radical responded successful this crisis. The emotion of the sadness, the fear, the anxiousness is mixed with 1 of utmost joyousness astatine the mode our unit responded to the astir superior situation successful their lives. They did truthful with innovation, spirit, and they showed specified loving compassion to the radical who were dying, arsenic good arsenic their families. Yes, theoretically successful medicine, we mightiness cognize we whitethorn beryllium confronted with a concern similar this, but to beryllium confronted successful existent beingness and for radical to emergence arsenic they did -- that to maine is truthful inspiring.
For a preview of the film, cheque retired the trailer here .