April 2, 2020

"I will physically be there with them every step of the way"

ICU nurse cares for critically ill COVID-19 patients who are on life support and require extensive medical attention to keep them breathing

"I have been a critical care RN for five years in Calgary and the experience of working in the midst of a global crisis has by far been the biggest challenge to date. I just recently returned from being a flight nurse in the Arctic for 10 months where I was touring and providing nursing care to those that call Nunavut and the NWT their home.

I came home at the beginning of March to the beginning of mass lock down and social distancing and it was a major hurdle to try and readjust to being home.

The worst part of this experience so far is being in the same boat with everyone who can’t see their families. I haven’t seen my parents and grandma physically since I last left for my last rotation up north - six weeks now.

I can’t imagine the mental anguish that others are feeling not being able to see their loved ones and I am just as broken in the same way.

However, I know I have a duty to care for those who are scared and isolated in hospital, and it fuels me with passion to be that person for a patient in knowing that they are at least not alone.

My patients may be deeply sedated and deathly ill, but I will physically be there with them every step of the way no matter what."

Mia Torres Groves is a critical care registered nurse currently caring for those who are very ill in the Intensive Care Unit at the Peter Lougheed Centre in Calgary.


UCalgary resources on COVID-19

For the most up-to-date information about the University of Calgary's response to the spread of COVID-19, visit the UCalgary COVID-19 Response website.