Dr Alex George opens up on 'emotional toll' of working on 'relentless' COVID frontline

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Dr. Alex George has been working in A&E during the coronavirus pandemic. (Doug Peters/EMPICS/PA)
Dr Alex George has been working in A&E during the coronavirus pandemic. (EMPICS/PA)

Dr Alex George has reflected on the emotional impact the coronavirus is having on hospital staff caring for COVID patients.

The Love Island star has been working in the A&E department of University Hospital Lewisham since the beginning of the pandemic, currently working two to three 10 hour shifts.

George told Grazia: "The daily deaths are very scary. [There’s] a huge number of patients coming to the A&E department, it just puts so much pressure on us.

Read more: Dr Alex George ‘emotional’ to receive COVID vaccine

"It’s really hard as well, because obviously staff are feeling fatigue. Doctors and nurses are off sick, either with Covid, or long Covid, or with burnout - so it’s been pretty tough."

It comes as England is currently in its third national lockdown with the death toll approaching 100,000 this week.

George added that during the first peak of the pandemic there was a "lot of adrenalin" as well as public support, but it's now harder as staff have "been so tired for such a long time".

"We're fed up, just like the public is. We just want the back of it. And it’s relentless - I think what's difficult is the emotional toll of it, each patient who is sick requires a really high level of care," he went on.

He did state the vaccine is the "light at the end of the tunnel" and that the rollout should be ramped up to be given out 24/7.

As well as the toll of working during the pandemic, George also experienced a devastating personal loss last year as his 19-year-old brother Llŷr took his own life after suffering with mental health problems.

Read more: Susanna Reid feels 'a little bit agoraphobic' because of busy streets

George said earlier this month that he wants to meet with Boris Johnson to discuss changing mental health education in schools.

He later gave an update stating he was “awaiting a call” from the Prime Minister.

For confidential emotional support at times of distress, contact The Samaritans at any time by calling 116 123 or emailing jo@samaritans.org.

Watch: Dr Alex George determined to improve mental health education in schools

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