April 12: ‘I’m frightened for the days and weeks to come’

Make no mistake – things are bad. We are doing our best to control the chaos but our third wave is here.

The term variant of concern (VOC) probably is no longer required. VOCs are the new COVID. It’s not if you have a variant, it’s what variant do you have. We’ve not been able to contain them. In the arms race against VOCs in Ontario, we are losing.

What’s happening in the hospital? Somber meetings discussing the transferring of critically ill patients to other cities; opening of satellite ICUs; keeping patients on high-flow oxygen on the ward when they normally would be in an ICU; asking when we will need to begin rationing resources; seeing where people can be redeployed to help … There were hospitals in the GTA that admitted 70 or 80 COVID patients over the weekend alone and the curve is steeply up-sloping.

We are drawing from the same pool of people to treat acute COVID patients and distribute vaccines across the province – this is not sustainable. Community-based vaccine delivery cannot come fast enough.

Early in the pandemic, I was telling peers to stay home to protect others. Now I’m telling them to stay home and stay distanced to protect themselves.

I’m frightened for the days and weeks to come.

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Seema Marwaha


Seema Marwaha is a general internal medicine physician, educator, researcher and journalist in Toronto.

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