Dr Larisa reflects on her time on the frontline
She's been our resident This Morning doctor on the frontline of the Covid 19 fight, but as Dr Larisa completes her final night shift at a London hospital, what happens now for her, and most importantly, the NHS? And as the number of cases continues to fall, what's really going on behind the scenes to prepare for the future? Dr Larisa explains it all.
Dr Larisa is an obstetrician and gynaecologist who, since 1 April, has voluntarily worked on an intensive care unit in a London hospital. She completed her final shift last night, after working on the frontline for almost every day over the last two months.
When she first started working on the frontline, Larisa believed she was fighting a losing battle. "We were just seeing so many people affected and we were watching them die. It is fair to say that my first day was literally a warzone, with so many patients filling beds and people all over the place. It was just mayhem and we had to quickly try and get to grips with it all."
The hardest thing about work on the frontline for Dr Larisa was watching people die, and she has struggled to come to terms with not being able to save more. "There are images in my mind of resuscitating patients and they will forever be stuck in my head. I got so attached to some people and when you can't save them and have to tell their families, you just want to crumble into a heap on the floor. I try to help myself by thinking of everything that we have done and can do and those who I have helped save."
Although there were dark days for Larisa, there were also miracle patients who she will never forget. "There were older people I was treating, who would have been completely dismissed in some countries because all of the odds were against them. I had a 70-year-old patient who on paper, didn't have a chance, but she has now pulled through it and I was able to give her an Easter egg finally on Sunday. She was so grateful and hearing her voice after not being able to communicate for so long, we both cried of happiness."
Dr Larisa will be going back to her day job next week, helping couples with fertility problems and delivering babies. "It is my bread and butter, I am really looking forward to going back because of course, the people I usually help haven't been able to receive it during this time. It feels like we are entering a new phase and I will miss it, but I am ready to move on."