Those of you who have seen the 1993 classic movie “Groundhog Day” starring Bill Murray may remember his character Phil Conners asking “What would you do if you were stuck in one place and every day was exactly the same, and nothing you did mattered?” and Ralph responding, “That about sums it up for me.” This might reflect much of the way that many have felt during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to the toll that the disease has taken on our physical health, the pandemic has also taken its toll on our emotional well-being. Humans are social beings, and the challenges of not seeing or really being with our families, friends, and patients can create feelings of emotional void. As our states and communities begin to reopen, hopefully this void will begin to subside and we will regain our sense of purpose, especially as we begin to once again serve all of our patients. It is important to remember that everything that we have done at our public health authorities’ recommendations and guidelines has served a vital purpose. In this instance, being stuck in one place matters—in a significant way.
Last month at this time, we reported 2 million cases worldwide; at the time of the present writing (one month later), we are close to 4 million cases worldwide. We have gone from 120,000 deaths to well over 275,000 deaths in a month’s time. Although new COVID-19 cases and deaths have risen in some places, we have seen curves flattening in many communities. We must not forget that as we begin to open up our communities and practices, at any moment we may need to go back to stricter infection-control measures. To reiterate what I noted last month, Dr. Anthony Fauci said it best: “...you’ve got to understand that you don’t make the timeline. The virus makes the timeline.” Again, everything that we do matters in beating COVID-19.
We wish all of our readers, patients, and the general public the best health as we come together globally to continue to fight COVID-19.
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