How Nigerian mother and daughter rushed to New York’s hardest hit hospital to save Americans battling COVID-19

The coronavirus crisis in the United States is far from over, and more than 90,000 people have died already, but with the number of new infections steadily going down in the past few days, the heroism of frontline workers, many of them African immigrants, is only beginning to be fully understood.

Two of those who battled the deadly bug at the heat of the crisis, saving lives, and praying and hoping they would not lose theirs, are two Nigerian American nurses Ona Onyia, 23, and Uchenna Onyia-Murphy, 49.

The mother and daughter from Arkansas were among a wave of hundreds of out-of-state nurses who descended on New York City to save lives at overwhelmed hospitals.

In a country where immigrants are often labeled criminals and rapists, the heroism of Onyia and Uchenna is an inspiration to immigrants who have been dehumanized by President Donald Trump.

According to a report on CNN, mother and daughter met every night at dusk, outside Elmhurst Hospital Center in Queens, New York, to spend a few quick moments in a tight but hasty embrace.

“The daughter is relieved her mother’s OK. The mother is hoping her daughter will be. This is the only time they can check on each other before they face the scores of coronavirus patients wheeled through the hospital doors,” the CNN report said.

It said mother and daughter decided to go to Elmhurst Hospital, called “the epicenter of the epicenter” of the coronavirus outbreak, for several reasons.

“Our desire to help triumphed our fears,” Onyia said. “Seeing how understaffed and overwhelmed New York hospitals were, we wanted to help and learn so we can help our hospitals back home if things got out of control.”

The report on CNN added: “For as long as she can remember, Onyia has always wanted to follow in her mother’s nursing footsteps.

“Her mother left a bad marriage in Nigeria and came to the US, where she attended college and works as a traveling nurse practitioner. Onyia got her degree at University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and is a registered nurse.

“When her mother decided to leave their shared home in Little Rock and go to New York, Onyia did not hesitate either. She took a leave of absence from her job, packed her bags and followed her two days later.

Ona Onyia

“That was the first week of April. Since then, Onyia says, they’ve never seen anything like it.”I’ve seen more death here than in my entire career. People going from talking to being put on the ventilator within minutes,” she says. “People are dying alone because no family is allowed in the hospital.”But even with the grief, there have been moments of joy and clarity.Like when they finally remove tubes from patients who are well enough to breathe on their own. And the valuable lessons that come with working in the nation’s largest city in the middle of a pandemic.

“It has been mentally and physically exhausting, but rewarding in so many ways,” Onyia says. “This virus will be around for a while, and this experience has fully prepared me to help my home state if it has outbreaks. I feel like I can work anywhere after this.”

Read full article

Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba
Based in Washington, District of Columbia, United States of America, Simon leads a brilliant team of reporters, freelance journalists, analysts, researchers and contributors from around the world to run TODAY NEWS AFRICA as editor-in-chief. Simon Ateba's journalistic experience spans over 10 years and covers many beats, including business and investment, information technology, politics, diplomacy, human rights, science reporting and much more. Write him: [email protected]

1 COMMENT

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Trending Now

Human Rights Watch calls on Ethiopia’s Nobel Peace Prize winning dictator Abiy Ahmed to restore internet and phone services in Oromia

The Ethiopian government should immediately lift the shutdown of internet and phone communications in the Oromia region, Human Rights Watch said on Monday....

Inside Angola’s First Lady Ana Dias Lourenço’s medical evacuation to Paris amid COVID-19 travel restrictions

It was not clear when things worsened. Life inside any presidential palace can be full of secrecy. The people outside often...

Can COVID-19 be passed through breastfeeding and should mothers wear face masks before breastfeeding their babies?

The World Health organization (WHO) has provided answers to questions about possible links between COVID-19 and breastfeeding and whether mothers should...

One of Nigeria’s most corrupt pastors Chris Oyakhilome sanctioned by UK regulators for spreading falsehood and linking 5G to coronavirus

One of Nigeria's most corrupt pastors Chris Oyakhilome who has become infamous for imposing gate fees during end of the year's...

South African girl kills self after sex with dad

A South African girl in the region of Mpumalanga has committed suicide after finding out that the man she had just had sex with was...
- Advertisement -

TOP NEWS

[/read_more]

Read full article

error:
150 Shares
Share
Tweet
WhatsApp
Reddit
Pin