For her series "Faces of the Frontlines," photographer Adelene Egan, an emergency room nurse at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, has captured the masked faces of her coworkers – nurses, doctors, PAs and other healthcare workers – fighting the coronavirus outbreak in New York City.
"This is very stressful mentally, physically, and emotionally for patients and for myself. Through this experience I learned that my coworkers are more like family the way we hold each other down helping us to push through the shift together as a unit." – Gerlene Valcin, ED RN, from Adelene Egan's Instagram page.
Adelene Egan ED RN
Photographer Adelene Egan, an ER nurse at New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center: "Being a nurse through this unprecedented time has been humbling, heartbreaking, and beautiful in some surprising little ways. You really start to realize that the most important thing is just people. To be with them, to savor them, and to love them, especially when life feels super-big and scary. Isolation has a way of telling us that of all things, we need each other the most."
Sabrina Ghyll, ED Registrar
"Let's begin with a smile." – Sabrina Ghyll, ED Registrar.
Jennine McAuley, Emergency Medicine PA
"I am a mom. I am a wife. I am a daughter. I am a sister. I am an Emergency Medicine PA. I come in each night to help those in need, and I try to do it with a smile under my mask. I lean on my family. I trust in my coworkers. We will get through this together." – Jennine McAuley, Emergency Medicine PA.
Jean Fitzgerald, ED RN
"I'm an ED nurse, and have only ever been an ED nurse. The job of the whole ED family has always been to confront chaos and uncertainty with confidence and grace, and to support our patients and colleagues through the worst moments of their lives. I have seen no greater example of this than right now, right here in the Cornell ED, and I can't imagine being anywhere else during this extraordinarily difficult time in world history." – Jean Fitzgerald, ED RN.
Belissa Mojica, ED RN
"On a normal night it's rare for me to put a patient on portable oxygen as they go back to the treatment area right away. Last night I went through 5 oxygen tanks in triage as patients kept coming in with abnormally low oxygen levels. One of the hardest parts of all this is telling families they can't stay with their loved ones." – Belissa Mojica, ED RN.
Woodeline, ED tech
"As an asthmatic frontline worker, I believe with God we can overcome every storm including COVID-19. For me it is faith over fear. We are all in this together." – Woodeline, ED tech.
Christel Vasquez, ED RN and Patient Care Director
"Many describe the Emergency Department as busy, scary, emotional, hopeful, unpredictable... We relate to it as our home away from home. My ED family continues to inspire and impress me. A heart felt THANK YOU to our everyday heroes." – Christel Vasquez, ED RN and Patient Care Director.
Emi Patseva, Mental Health Worker
"In this time of unpredictability and turmoil working in the Emergency Room is definitely a challenge. However, working with a team and a group of selfless and caring people who choose to be on the front line ready to save Iives regardless of what is happening in their personal life, is an honor. Witnessing doctors, nurses, and many other professionals working together as one to save people's lives is what makes me proud to say that I am a member of the NYP family. One of the many things that keeps me going is my faith in God and his promise in Psalms 23:4, that even when we walk through the darkest valley, we will not be afraid, for we know that God is with us. Ultimately, knowing that there are people who are willing to risk their lives and their well-being to save others is a clear indication to me that our world is not lost and that we can conquer anything." – Emi Patseva, Mental Health Worker.
Joyce Bulger-Noto, ED Nurse Educator
Joyce Bulger-Noto demonstrates how to get an accurate nasopharyngeal specimen.
Liz Babeuf, ED RN
"Emergency room staff are known for being fierce, funny, strong, resourceful, and determined. But what we often don't get credit for is the compassion that drives us to help people during some of the scariest moments of their life. This has never been truer than right now, when we become the only people allowed to share the intimate moments of the patients' time in the hospital. I am so proud to be a member of this team and continue to be inspired by them everyday!" – Liz Babeuf, ED RN
Marie Owens, ED RN
"To achieve success you need a recipe of ingredients. Everything you put in will only lead to a great outcome. Every day I enter the doors of NYP I am overwhelmed by what I encounter with my coworkers: respect, professionalism, gratitude, generosity, empathy, humility, experience, camaraderie ... just put this together and you have perfected a recipe that excels beyond belief. During this difficult time we have learned a lot about ourselves and tested our coping mechanisms to an all-time high. I am so proud to work with all of you and refer to you as family. Keep smiling behind your masks, the glimmer in your eyes shows your kindness." – Marie Owens, ED RN.
Susan Casse, ED RN
From a poem by Emily Dickinson: "If I can stop one heart from breaking, I shall not live in vain; If I can ease one life the aching, Or cool one pain, Or help one fainting robin Unto his nest again, I shall not live in vain."
Mauvernie Langley, ED Unit Clerk
"Proud to be a part of this team, yet I'm scared, but motivated to be with my co-workers!" – Mauvernie Langley, ED Unit Clerk.
Patricia Jones Williams, ED RN
"Believing that God is in control and working with a wonderful and brilliant work family is what keeps me going. Life is what we make it we can either roll with the punches or give in. I prefer to live the dream amidst this nightmare. The sun will come out tomorrow." – Patricia Jones Williams, ED RN
Naomi Maco, ED RN
"The most courageous team members are at the frontline! Working in the ER has its tough moments but the good moments and working with some of the best team members in NYC is what keeps me here." – Naomi Maco, ED RN
Sonieta Reyes, ED RN
"May God guide and watch over all of us who are in the frontlines during this time of crisis. I am praying for the patients and families whose loved ones are in our care." – Sonieta Reyes, ED RN.
Kamanie Nowbath, ED Technician
"Every shift I come to work is both a challenge and a blessing in disguise. I am very proud to work for my hospital. We are treated here with respect and dignity and putting patients first is what I do. Credo to all our hospitals first responders..... we rock!" – Kamanie Nowbath, ED Technician.
Megan Warren, ED Clerk
"Through the trying times of COVID the nurses have been such an inspiration. It has solidified my [wanting] to become an NYP nurse when I graduate next year." – Megan Warren, ED Clerk.
Michelle Trew Palmer, ED RN
"Mission accepted." – Michelle Trew Palmer, ED RN.
For more info:
Adelene Egan Photography
Edited by CBSNews.com senior producer David Morgan
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