Some words of caution as we lift shelter in place orders…

As of yesterday, San Diego fully entered Phase 2b, which means restaurants and retail businesses can have in-person customers with modifications to operations.

I wanted to offer some words of warning as we begin to venture out.
We have entered that stage of the pandemic where we’re just tired. Tired of working so hard and so long. Tired of the loneliness, for ourselves, for our loved ones. But remember, we have met with a novel virus that is causing disease unlike anything we have ever seen, during an era of scarcity that we have never before encountered, in a time of rapidly unfolding science and ever-changing information… and misinformation. In this time where every aspect of our lives has been affected by the virus, letting exhaustion affect our decisions will be detrimental. My only plea? Don’t let boredom or fear create a monster so scary that you start to believe that he’s real.

Please remember that we were sheltering in place so as to not overwhelm our health care system.

If you become ill with COVID-19 and you have to go to a hospital, you are overrunning the hospitals and potentially taking ventilators away from people with cancer or involved in major trauma. A child with cystic fibrosis or debilitating asthma can’t control the exacerbation of her disease, but you can exert some semblance of control as to whether you contract COVID-19. In the last 2 months, I have taken care of plenty of COVID-19 patients in the hospital, sure, but the majority of my patients are those with end-stage cancer or severe kidney/liver/cardiac disease. They need to be hospitalized or they will die, and we need to save beds for them. So, can we bear another surge, with potentially more cases? No, we need to save beds and ventilators for innocent, compromised patients, not for those that want to go to bars and play beer pong.
I feel impatient as well. I want to get back to life as much as anyone else. I want to travel and embrace my family. I want to see my best friend’s new baby. But I remember that we have a greater purpose and it’s to make space for the people that need us. For my cancer, my liver, my trauma patients. Thanks for sharing.

Love, Dr Yang