Minneapolis ICU nurse shares sobering look at 'extreme' impact of COVID-19

A nurse who works in the intensive care unit at Hennepin Healthcare in Minneapolis is sharing her view of the relentless impact of COVID-19.

“You really can’t verbally describe how extreme it is,” said Amy Scott, an ICU nurse at Hennepin Healthcare.

Serving on the frontlines of pandemic, she says, is a non-stop battle that can be both rewarding and exhausting. 
“If everybody in the community knew how awful this was, they wouldn’t question the stay-at-home,” said Scott.
Scott says in many of the cases they treat in the ICU, the illness progresses rapidly.
“To have someone come to the ICU and they’re alert and talking and you really get a sense for what a wonderful person they are and then you leave, like I would leave, and I come back and they’re intubated,” said Scott.
When Scott spoke with FOX 9, 19 of the 20 patients on her floor were positive for COVID-19. She says they’re constantly admitting new cases and are almost always full.
“We cannot get the healthy patients out of the room fast enough to get it ready for the next COVID patient,” she said. 
The personal toll is weighing on all the staff. She says she’s found herself crying in the hallway outside patient rooms and hasn’t seen her elderly mother in nearly two months. Her employer is offering counseling to the staff, which she said helps give them an outlet. She also said the support of the community has been extremely uplifting, with people delivering everything from food to homemade masks daily.

She also says even with all the stress, there are so many moments of hope.
“We often will tell each other, ‘Remember two days ago when you were with so and so? They got out, they’re in another part of the hospital,’ and you’re just so excited,” said Scott.

Scott said with every day that goes by, they feel more confident and have more insight into this virus, which gives them all hope that we will get to the other side.
“We’ll get through this and we’ll look back and say, ‘Yup, we did that,’” she said.