Sunday, April 26, 2020

"An Eerie Sort of Calm Over New York City ~ COVID-19, A Nurse's Story

An eerie sort of calm has begun to fall over New York City  Not the reassuring kind of calm that signals the return of peace and order, more of an anxiety filled lull.  I’ve watched as the amount of patients in the ER has dropped in the last two weeks from over 100 to 27 yesterday when I clocked out. Empty stretchers line the hallways, nurses are sitting down for what seems like the first time in weeks, doctors scrolling social media at the desk, patients have started to return for minor complaints that seemed to have vanished over the previous month.  But it’s hard to feel exactly hopeful; we have no idea what the coming months will bring.  The idea that “normal” does not exist any more is rightfully terrifying. There is no doubt that there will be a second wave of this, a third… it’s really a race between science and nature.  I understand the frustration of everyone who wants to return to work, to see their friends and loved ones, but I am so terrified of what might happen once people begin gathering in large numbers again.  

I will be haunted forever by some of that I’ve seen in the last 6 weeks.  Coding a patient in a room where he was cohorted with another covid positive patient, watching him watch as we unsuccessfully tried to restart the heart of the man who laid in the bed next to his.  Watching the palliative care doctor facetime with a patient’s family members as they said their goodbyes, and then her turning me and telling me to take the patient off the bipap mask that was keeping her alive at 2 pm, place her on a nasal cannula and push drugs to make her comfortable.  Having to be the last person she heard, holding her hand and telling her that her family loved her, and then having to rush off to try to keep my dozen other patients medicated and safe.  Worse than this, coming around the corner to find that one of my DNR/DNI patients had passed.  Alone.  While I and everyone else was too busy to be by her side.  Living with the guilt that I couldn’t honor her and her family by being beside her.  I did not “sign up for this”. It’s a catastrophe.    

Taking report from a coworker and not being able to control my tears.  13 patients.  All admitted.  Two DNR/DNI on the verge of passing at any moment.  One on a heparin drip.  One on an insulin drip.  Every single one with medications due, labs to be drawn.  No one has eaten.  No one can use the bathroom by themselves.  People are lying in dirty beds, everyone’s dignity shattered but when forced to choose between administering life saving medications and change someone’s sheets, I have to make heartbreaking choices.  What if it were me in that bed, or my own mother?  What we were doing was not nursing.  It’s not “part of the job.”  It’s a war zone.  

Not enough oxygen tanks, not enough IV pumps, not enough non-rebreather masks, not enough pulse oximetry monitors, not enough nurses, not enough med techs, not enough stretchers, not enough hands, not enough medication, not enough isolation gowns, not enough face shields, not enough room in the morgue, not enough thoughts and prayers, not enough leadership, not enough foresight, not enough trust in science.  No amount of you calling us “heroes” makes any part of the mismanagement of this crisis acceptable.  We will carry these scars forever. 

We have to be cautious and patient as we move forward.  We have to embrace a new normal.  Just because you survived the initial onslaught of COVID-19 does not guarantee that you or me will be as lucky a second time.  We cannot be cavalier about our safety and the safety of those around us.  My heart is broken by the images in the media of people calling me and my colleagues liars.  My heart breaks for those whose ignorance will cost them their lives, or worse yet, the lives of those around them who aren’t strong enough to fight this off.  But we are living in a nation guided by a leader who champions ignorance, who has cultivated a false narrative in this nation that equates Americanism with the right to do and say whatever you want regardless of consequence. The blood of those who will continue to fall victim to this virus will be forever on his hands as he willingly encourages his supporters to fight for their right to protest stay at home orders.  

I will keep showing up.  I will keep practicing gratitude every single day for my health and wellbeing, and that of my family and friends.  I will feel the hope that electrifies me at 7 pm when my neighbors open their windows and doors and cheer for all of us on the frontlines fighting for a chance at normal, whatever that will mean.  And I will pray for the day that rational leadership returns to our country.

Sunday, April 05, 2020


Good News: ANYONE MAY QUALIFY ~ Individuals can receive between 1,200 to 2,500 dollars as part of the stimulus

Business owners may get an advance of 10,000 dollars on a loan directly deposited to their account.

 My friend’s accountant just sent me some very valuable information that might be of great benefit to you, friends, family and associates.

I have included the stimulus information for both individuals and business owners below # 1 is for individuals and # 2 for business owners below.

All needed and necessary information to take advantage of this stimulus is explained below I suggest you move on this fast.


You are probably aware that most people will be getting a payment from the Federal government. See this online calculator to see if you qualify and how much you can expect to receive:
Stimulus Check Calculator 2020

I believe most of you received my earlier email on the subject. Here's an update:
  • If you have already filed your 2019 tax return AND you had your refund direct deposited you will automatically have the stimulus payment direct deposited into the same account. No need to do anything.
  • If you haven't filed your 2019 return but you did file 2018 with a direct deposit refund you also will get the stimulus payment automatically. You are not required to file the 2019 return right away.
  • If you have filed your 2019 or your 2018 tax return and you did not have a direct deposit there are 2 options: 1) the IRS will send a check or 2) the IRS indicates that in the next few weeks they will put up a page on their website where you can enter in your bank details and get a direct deposit of the stimulus payment.
  • If you or someone you know has not filed either a 2018 or 2019 tax return filing will be required in order to get the stimulus check. There is word that a simplified filing option will be coming forward soon.
  • Finally, this payment is characterized as a credit for the 2020 tax year. So if you somehow miss out on your check now the word is that you will receive the credit when you file the 2020 tax return.
If you have moved since you filed your last Federal income tax return it might be wise to file a Form 8822 with the IRS. It is a simple form. You can search and download it from the web.


It is likely that you have heard about the small business programs that have just been established by the CARES Act. The Federal government has instituted these loans and grants to assist the small business community which is vital to the economic health of the country. So if you could use some assistance in getting through the current tough times I urge you to apply.

The loans may not need to be repaid if the proceeds are used for qualifying expenditures. This is a temporary and limited program so if you intend to apply I recommend you begin as soon as feasible.

EIDL Loan Advance
Many business will meet the qualifications for this program. It is possible to get a quick loan of up to $10,000 depending on various factors which will be worked out later. Note that this is a quick turnaround loan and the I believe the amount will be based on what is needed to keep your business afloat during for the next short period of time to a maximum of $10,000. You can read some of the details on the following link.

Click on the "EIDL Loan Advance" link for details and start your application there. The programs is managed by the Small Business Administration and will be processed by your bank, credit union or other qualifying lender. You can start the application online here and the information will be transferred to your bank or credit union to process the loan. Note not all banks and credit unions participate in this program.

The link to the application is here:

Paycheck Protection Program

This program will apply to specific business types including:
  1. A sole proprietorship - This is a self-owned business or independent contractor who has filed a Schedule C on the individual income tax return. 
  2. S Corporation or C corporation - this type of entity will generally only qualify if it has payroll.
The basic idea here is to make it easier for business to keep workers employed but it does cover other aspects as well.

It is not likely that a corporation or S corporation without employees would qualify but you can apply for this in addition to the EIDL program above.

Note that employees are not required if you are a sole proprietor or independent contractor.

Use the same link above for details about this program.

There are additional programs and California has its own programs. But there appears to be a flurry of activity so quick action on this might prove fruitful.