As the COVID-19 pandemic grew into a frightening monster to be reckoned with, medical professionals throughout the world had to address a question within themselves: where does the balance lie between our duty to heal and our personal obligations for our individual health and safety?
As personal protective equipment shortages, long work hours, and hospital overflow wreaked havoc on the medical systems nationwide, doctors, nurses, and other medical personnel were plunged into uncertainty and were almost wholly unsupported in this ethical dilemma. Our duty to treat and our obligation to treat the community around us does not often directly conflict with our own health and safety. Yet as 2020 raged on, this became the case for many. The balance of desire to be involved and to be present for their communities was difficult and healthcare workers were often only supported in name only, called “heroes” by the same people who ignored CDC recommendations on social distancing and masks.
Our obligations to the society we live in are strong but our sacrifices should not be taken for granted. Balance depicts a healthcare worker gracefully poised like a ballerina, toeing the line and surrounded by a kaleidoscope pattern representing the fabric of a community in chaos. Despite our uncertainty and the difficulty that was associated with making these decisions, healthcare workers throughout the US danced the line and took each day as it came. This piece commemorates this uncertainty of knowing where our cards will fall, this shift in equilibrium between healer and individual that we felt as we decided to undertake sacrifices and move forward for the good of those around us.
be Still: Vol. 5, Article 12.
Available at: https://nsuworks.nova.edu/bestill/vol5/iss1/12