This is Carleigh. She is a community health registered nurse.
“Before COVID-19, I was hired to be a community health nurse up north and in rural Indigenous communities in Ontario. Since the start of the pandemic, my entire job description has changed. I was unable to be onboarded into the acute role that I was hired into due to the inability to do any form of in-person training. Instead, I got redeployed into a public health COVID-19 specific role for indigenous communities in the Moose Factory region. I was expecting to be an acute care nurse, but then I was put into a public health COVID-19 role.
It’s quite interesting to see how all the preventative measures that we put into place will help the vulnerable populations. I have the unique opportunity to see how the measures will work.
The population here has so many risk factors and comorbidities, so when COVID comes up north, I fear they are going to be decimated.
The thing that’s been on my mind the most is trying to impress upon the population the severity of COVID-19. The community is very isolated, yet local patients are going out to areas that have confirmed cases.
I worry for them, because when SARS hit, more than half the population was wiped out on this particular reserve.
I was hoping that they would have more of a fearful attitude, but it seems as though they feel that it won’t come up north because it hasn’t happened yet.”