This is Maria. She is a medical laboratory technologist.
“The beginning of the pandemic was stressful for me. I felt very isolated from my family and friends. All the negative press surrounding the pandemic was further heightening my stress and anxiety, so I eventually decided to stop following the news.
One of the hardest parts during this pandemic was when half of the laboratory staff was self-isolating due to exposure to a COVID-19 patient.
This left the laboratory in a very vulnerable state, as we were working at a less-than-skeleton staffing level. Many of the remaining medical laboratory technologists had to work overtime, were pulled from other sites within our network, and worked long stretches of shifts.
One of the positive changes I have seen is the recognition that laboratory professionals are getting during this pandemic.
Medical Laboratory Week was celebrated at the end of last month, and this is the first time that I have seen an outpour of support coming from hospitals and political leaders.
In the past, I have seen hospitals neglect to mention Medical Laboratory Week or recognize their staff, but this year it has been vastly different. I hope this continues and that hospital administration and political leaders will continue to see the value of medical laboratory professionals.
Within this pandemic, many have acted selflessly and have decided to give back wherever they could. People have reached out to help those most vulnerable, or are volunteering their time to make additional protective supplies. When the news is filled with stories of the selfish toilet paper hoarders, it is nice to be reminded that there are selfless people out there who give back however they can.”