SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – Nurses caring for patients infected with COVID-19 say the omicron variant has been especially ruthless among children.
Kids are not only testing positive at an alarming rate but many are requiring trips to the hospital.
With no end in sight to a pandemic that has extended beyond two years, nurses say their motivation to care for patients has not waned but they are losing steam while the omicron variant spreads at a rapid pace.
“We have absolutely broken down here in our office on a number of occasions. We are talking to each other after hours,” Margy Mayfield said.
Margy Mayfield is executive director of the non-profit pediatric home care agency Coastal Kids Home Care.
Her staff serves the South Bay and says it has remained healthy throughout the public health emergency.
She says the virus has not spread from patients to staff or from staff to patients but adds the kids are getting sick at an alarming rate — more now than any other time during the pandemic.
“We’ve brought home children that have had COVID and had severe reactions to it and our brain-dead children on ventilators. And, we’re now staffing shifts for these kids. So, it has affected us across the board dramatically, and it has climbed to a point where I feel like we’re hanging on by a thread,” Mayfield said.
In the past week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says new hospital admissions for kids with COVID-19 increased 66% – Record highs since the pandemic began two years ago.
“There’s such an explosion of cases, that so many people are sick, so many people are quarantining, so many people are away from the workplace, that we’re all working short-staffs. So, that makes the conditions harder,” Mayfield said.
Harder and worsening by the day.