Nebraska Medicine's COVID-19 unit hopes worst is over

(Photo: Alissa Eckert, MS / Dan Higgins, MAM / License Link)(MGN)
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) -- Hospitals and healthcare leaders report new coronavirus case numbers every day.

Dr. Gary Anthone, Nebraska's chief medical officer gave context on Friday as to what the most recent numbers mean for the mental toll on Douglas County’s doctors and nurses.

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“I hope the worst is done here,” said Nebraska Medicine’s Grant Fabry, a lead nurse at one of the COVID-19 ICUs. “There is a possibility the worst is not behind us.”

The unit is an extension of the biocontainment unit.

As we head into the Memorial holiday weekend, Fabry is looking back on the work done so far to combat the coronavirus -- and the emotional toll that comes with it.

“I thought we would fill up like New York or California, and luckily we haven’t yet. When we started moving over to that new unit, I thought it would start happening soon. But no, I haven’t run out of juice,” Fabry said.

Anthone reported only one new coronavirus hospitalization for Douglas County, bringing the total to 135.

“I can look at these numbers all day, but the real data comes from talking to my colleagues -- (chief medical officers) and doctors that I used to work with and asking them how they’re feeling. And not one of them is saying they are.”

“If we do hit another peak, we will have more resources available with more open units.”

As the state loosens health measures, Nebraska Medicine believes it has not yet reached the peak of the number of COVID-19 patients.

Right now, it’s treating the highest number of positive cases yet.

A reminder to the rest of us to keep our guard up, as healthcare systems bear the brunt of the burden.

“Our numbers aren’t going down, so we’re not out of the thick of this yet,” Fabry said.