HYANNIS – “I have not seen a Covid patient in ICU since the end of June,” said Bette Texiera, a registered nurse in the critical care unit of Cape Cod Hospital.
On Friday, September 11, Texeira updated Cape Cod Wave Magazine about the situation in ICU at the hospital, as she has several times since March.
“It’s not surprising to me,” she said of the lack of Covid cases in the hospital. “I feel like as we spoke in our interviews, the curve had been flattened early on.”
As to why the cases have stayed so low on the Cape, Texiera said, “I’m just going to say nothing. I don’t really know.”
Texeira, 47, of Mashpee, was first interviewed by Cape Cod Wave Magazine on March 24 about the situation inside the hospital. She updated us on April 3, on April 17, May 1, on May 22, June 9, and again on July 21. She is a registered nurse who has worked for Cape Cod Hospital for 26 years, the last seven in the critical care unit.
Texeira has agreed to give updates, when she has time, to Cape Cod Wave Magazine on what is happening in the hospital and specifically in the ICU during the Covid-19 pandemic.
This is the third update Texeira has given with good news. In the spring, the hospital and staff were stressed with patients, some of the staff became sick, and the high level of care, including emotional care, had taken a toll, she had explained.
On Friday, Texeira said, “I think we’ve had a great summer. I think people are shocked about how the summer went so well. Usually summer can get pretty crazy here in the hospital. We had less of everything this summer.”
She attributed the less busy hospital to the fact that “people are not going out. People are gathering in their groups. Small family groups. There has been less beach accidents. Less of everything.”
Texeira said she is not worried about a second wave of Covid patients at the hospital in the fall and winter.
“I feel like, on the Cape, people are definitely going to start isolating again. People will start social distancing again,” said Texeira. “On the Cape, anyways, people don’t go out much in the winter.”
“I am more worried about the flu,” she said. “I think we’ll continue to be ready for the flu season as we always are every year. Because on the Cape, it gets bad.”
Texeira said that “all the mask wearing protecting ourselves from Covid means we are not protecting ourselves from other things by exposing ourselves and building our immune systems.”
And with everyone washing all the time, she said “Too much antibacterial kills all the good bacteria in your skin and in your body.”
The biggest concern Texeira has about Covid-19 is the secondary, long-term effects on patients who may come down with pneumonia or the flu this winter.
Texeira said she is also concerned about those effects on anyone who may have had the virus but not the symptoms. “I have positive antibodies,” she said. “I was never symptomatic. But I don’t know what the long-term residual effects are on the lungs,” she said.
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For our other coverage of Covid-19, see Cape Cod Covidispatches
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