Intense Scenes from the Covid ICU Show the Ongoing Drama of the Pandemic

It didn’t have to be this way.

The global pandemic was destined to take too many lives, but medical breakthroughs meant that viable, highly effective vaccines could end things much quicker than in pandemics past.

Those refusing vaccinations have severely lengthened the time that the virus can mutate and spread, continuing the dramatic hospitalizations and deaths around the world.

For those of us who took things seriously, obeyed the guidelines, and respected our neighbors, it’s a source of extreme outrage and disbelief. But, two years later, here we are.

Photojournalist turned nurse Alan Hawes has given us an intense look into one of the hundreds of ICUs around the USA that are still in crisis mode, treating patients on the edge of death.

Those patients are mostly the unvaccinated, but also a number of responsible citizens who were vaccinated, and happened to get breakthrough infections.

The series shows patients and families in states of anguish and fear, and the worn out healthcare workers, who continually fight to save patients, even those who fight reality and science, and take needless risks with their health.

Read more on NPR.

“If the public was more educated and could see what was going on and feel some of those emotions that I hope my photos show, I felt like it would make a bigger difference,” says Hawes

Included in the series are a number of patients like the man above, age 37, who thought he could ‘fight his way out’ of covid, and refused the vaccines, just to see his health deteriorate to the point he nearly died. He now has had a change of heart, and wishes everyone would get the vaccine.