With the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Yevhen’s personal and working life changed dramatically. The burden on ambulance workers, both psychological and physical, increased. There were more and more challenges, and the work required increased care and vigilance for one’s own health and safety.
“We tried to double, even triple, the protections of the safety of the whole team, and of the relatives and friends who were waiting for us at home,” Yevhen says. “Every driver, paramedic and doctor were worried: If they suddenly fell ill, who would work then?”
Yevhen says the changes caused by the pandemic affected his work across the board. As the number of calls increased, it became much more challenging for crews to cope. Sometimes crews couldn’t even get back to their stations, they were so crowded, and getting used to working a whole shift in a protective uniform was especially difficult.
“Every call is emotional in its own way,” says Yevhen. “For instance, when you are called to collect a mother in labour, you realize that you’re contributing to the birth of a new person. However, some calls can really get to you. Sadly, sometimes people do not appreciate the work of ambulance crews, and they insult us, and swear at us, instead of thinking about our situation.”