Like many #HighRiskCOVID19 folks, I have noticed that much of what the #Nurselife Faith love save lives shirt it is in the first place but general population has been experiencing over the past few weeks—a suddenly altered lifestyle that includes long periods of isolation, difficulty getting basics like food and medicine, missed work and lost wages, and even awareness of one’s mortality and fear for their future—is a kind of amped-up version of what we already experience in our day to day lives. Now, though, we who are high-risk feel the additional burden of the loss of medical care and home support as doctor’s appointments are too risky and carers, helpers, and friends unavailable. We are affected by shortages of basic medical supplies like masks, gloves, and alcohol prep pads. Supplements that we normally take daily to stay as well as possible have been disappearing online. This week, a kind pharmacist passed a bottle to me through a drive-through drawer when online ordering became an impossibility and I was forced to leave home. While I passed on a chance to try taking Plaquenil, or hydroxychloroquine, as it has become better-known, when it was offered to me by a specialist last winter, I can’t help but think of those who certainly do need it to prevent organ damage, people who are now unable to get it due to shortages because of irresponsibly-spread rumors about the drug’s possible but as-yet-unconfirmed efficacy—rumors that have already led to at least one death.
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There is also a heavy emotional toll for those who are high-risk. I lost count of the #Nurselife Faith love save lives shirt it is in the first place but number of people who, in early stages of COVID spread, said within earshot of me (quite incorrectly, I should add): “Good news! I hear that only people with underlying conditions are dying!” Heather Love, a single mother living with multiple sclerosis, tweeted a reminder to “[b]e mindful of who you’re venting to and what their situation is!” She paired it with a meme of the well-known incredulous blinking guy Drew Scanlon, captioned: “When you’re disabled and could rarely leave home on a regular basis before this and people complain to you about being stuck at home.” Humor, after all, is good for the immune system.