UK health care workers face a 7X higher risk than than non-essential workers of becoming severely sick from COVID-19, according to a new study in BMJ Occupational & Environmental Medicine.
More takeaways from the survey of 120,000+ workers (including 271 who fell severely ill):
- Non-white essential workers had the highest risk—more than 8X likelier than than non-essential workers to become severely sick.
- Social care and transport workers were twice as likely to have severe COVID-19.
- Non-white, non-essential workers were 3X more at risk than their white counterparts.
Ethical Burdens Harm Health Workers, Too
Health care providers are bearing another terrible burden: Making difficult decisions when hospitals are overwhelmed.
In an Atlantic must-read, Jordan Kisner describes the stress test faced by resource-strapped health workers and clinical ethicists during the pandemic.
“At a certain point, I realized the ambulance is the score of this movie,” Joseph J. Fins, chief of medical ethics at the Weill Cornell Medical Center in Manhattan, told Kisner.
The options are often bad—but medical ethicists’ guidance can create a balm that can help fade the “moral scar” clinicians develop.