Combating COVID fatigue as new cases emerge locally and across the nation


ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Even as new cases of COVID-19 emerge locally and across the country many are suffering from COVID fatigue.

The term has emerged to capture the feeling of people who are tired of adhering to restrictions in place since the onset of the pandemic in March.

Dr. Colleen Fogarty, the Department Chair for the University of Rochester Department of Family Medicine, discussed COVID fatigue and the steps we all should take Tuesday during News 8 at Sunrise.

“Seven months feels long in our personal experience,” said Dr. Fogarty. “It’s short in the course of human history but it’s pretty exhausting with the isolation and all of the other guidelines that we have. It’s very hard for folks.”

Dr. Fogarty said Monroe County and New York State in general did a marvelous job in the Spring flattening the curve and reducing the transmission of COVID. “We continue to be in that space where we have to follow what are called non-pharmaceutical interventions, or things every person makes a choice to do. So wearing a good mask that covers our nose and mouth and secures around the head, social or physical distancing six feet apart from other people – those are the key interventions. And then, obviously as always, good handwashing.”

For those who feel they are suffering from COVID fatigue, Dr. Fogarty said, “My message for all of us – whatever our level of fatigue may be – is keep up the work. The work is for each of us as individuals and for us as a community, and for our health care system. If cases are on the rise, more people will be hospitalized. More people will be needing intensive care unit level of care and that can overwhelm the health care system. We do not want to get into a situation where people are not able to access the health care that they need and deserve so all of us are responsible to each other for masking up, physical distancing, and good handwashing.”

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