The Jakarta Post
Besides medical treatment, COVID-19 patients also need companionship, a nurse at the Sulianti Saroso Infectious Diseases Hospital (RSPI) said.
Nurdiansyah shared his experience treating patients at the COVID-19 referral hospital in a press conference held by the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) on Sunday.
"One nurse currently handles three to four patients," he said. "One patient can take up to one hour for each treatment."
He said that sometimes nurses might even spend three to four hours at a time with a single patient, because some patients are afraid to be left alone.
"We have to motivate patients and strengthen them mentally so that their immune system is also strengthened," he said. "They hold our hands and we encourage them. They need mental support."
Nurdiansyah said that nurses helped coach patients who experienced shortness of breath and tried to comfort patients with lighthearted television programs.
He said the first thing the nurses did before their shift every morning was pray for the patients' recovery and the medical workers' safety.
He said he was saddened that despite all their hard work, many workers faced hostility due to their close proximity to COVID-19 patients.
"Some nurses have been kicked out of their rooming houses and nurses' children are alienated by the neighbors due to the negative stigma surrounding COVID-19," he said.
Nevertheless, he thanked those in the public who have played their part to help slow the spread of the outbreak
"We, nurses, and medical workers are placed on the last line. We are the last resource to come for when infections happened. But the public is on the front line, so let's keep fighting the pandemic together," he said.