An intensive care nurse, Juanita Nittla, revealed the moment when she turned off the ventilators of critically ill COVID-19 patients. She considered herself partially responsible for their deaths because she switched off the ventilators when doctors decide they can no longer be saved.
Juanita has been working with seriously ill patients of coronavirus at Royal Free hospital in Hampstead. Remembering one of her patient’s last moments she said that she held her hands in her last moment until she died.
Miss Nittla said that we played the music on the request of the family and placed the phone next to the patient ears. When she is about to turn off the machine she asked her daughter to speak.
She revealed that she saw her heart rate hit zero on the screen. When she disconnected the tubes providing sedation drugs her daughter still talking to her mom. Ms. Nittla took the phone and informed her that she already died.
Nittla disclosed that five minutes after switching off the ventilators they lost their battle. After that, she along with other staff gave her a bath and wrapped her in white clothes and placed her body in a bag.
She said: “I put a sign of cross on her forehead before closing the bad.” Novel coronavirus has caused the lungs to fail and critically ill patient need ventilators for breathing.
It is very difficult time for the Doctors to take the decision whether to stop the treatment or not of critically ill patients who have no hope.
Ms Nittla added: “It is daunting. I do have nightmares.” She said: “Before the start of the shift all the staff hold their hands together and say ‘stay safe’.”