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Healthcare workers battle burnout as the pandemic continues

COVID cases are on the rise again at SIH hospitals.
COVID cases are on the rise again at SIH hospitals.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, healthcare workers are also struggling with burnout and staffing shortages.

Dr. Joshua Miksanek, with Southern Illinois Healthcare, said seeing the impact of COVID on patients has been difficult for doctors and nurses.

"It's tough to see people sick and suffering. And that's always been the case in healthcare, but it's been so rewarding when you can save a life or you can help someone," he said. "Some of these people with COVID, they just suffer for days and days and don't make it. And you feel kind of helpless to make a difference in getting them better, and that's really taken a toll on a lot of doctors and a lot of nurses."

He said healthcare workers are also struggling to deal with a nationwide nursing shortage and the politicization of the pandemic.

Miksanek urges people to get vaccinated and boosted to help ease the strain on hospitals as southern Illinois heads toward a third COVID surge.

Steph Whiteside is a Digital Media News Specialist with WSIU radio in Carbondale, Ill. She previously worked as a general reporter at AJ+ and Current TV.
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