New SHA campaign deals with educating others about stresses being felt by healthcare workers

Front-line healthcare workers have been dealing with COVID-19 for well over a year meaning their stress level has been high as they try to keep themselves and their families safe from the virus.

The Saskatchewan Health Authority has launched a campaign called “Faces of the Fight” where several in the field discuss what COVID-19 has done to them. It is a campaign whose aim is to help educate others about vaccinations and following health measures.

Amber Lockert is a paramedic.  Like everyone other healthcare worker, she says it is a very stressful time even though she is not in the rooms or the hallways as so many others are.

“Just because we are not in a hospital setting, our ambulance is our room.  We have the same worries when we show up to calls. We are able to treat the signs and symptoms, but we have seen from the beginning of this that our efforts are not enough and that is why we need the ICU’s and critical care centres.” Lockert said. “We have a lot of stress and we have a lot of questions.  Will I lose this patient or will my patient get cared soon enough, is there a bed for my patient.  With our healthcare system being so overwhelmed, these are things I think of because working in rural Saskatchewan because we have transport times and we don’t have many rural ER’s open right now which increases transport time which makes it longer for them to get proper treatment.”

Lockert says the big worry is also about what happens when she returns to her family.

“The biggest thing for me is I have three little kids at home and yes, it’s my job to serve the public and I love doing what I do, but this fourth wave is affecting children so do I want to put my children at risk.” Lockert said. “I am going to do everything possible to protect my kids, but sometimes that isn’t enough.  I may not even get it from work, you can pick it up from anywhere.

Numbers continue to show that those who have not been vaccinated are the ones clogging up hospitals. She understands there are some who will outright refuse to be vaccinated for whatever reason, but for those who are suffering from vaccine hesitancy, she feels it is imperative those people realize that getting vaccinated will ease that stress level for everyone.

“As a community, as a province, as neighbour-to-neighbour, we have to put our differences aside for the overall good and come together.” Lockert said. “Vaccinated or not vaccinated, we have to come together and put our differences aside.  We have to stop being self-centred and think about those around you like your parents, your grandparents and your family.   It’s not fair to the whole province or your community to not want to fight this.  If we don’t come together, we won’t win this.  We all have the same goal and have our life the way it used to be with no restrictions but we have to be united.”

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