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National Doctors' Day: Medical professionals reflect after challenging year on the pandemic frontlines

Posted at 7:15 PM, Mar 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-30 23:22:54-04

March 30 is National Doctors' Day, and this past year has given everyone the utmost reason to show their appreciation.

Doctors spend their days keeping us healthy and saving lives, a job that became even more difficult due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

”I can think of a couple of doctors at least, to my knowledge, who worked months, probably five or six months, without a day off dealing with the COVID pandemic,” said Dr. Marc Elieson, Medical Director for Inpatient Medicine at Baylor Scott & White in Waco.

Those few months turned into a year of fear and hardship for doctors and their patients.

”For them not to be with their loved ones or see their loved ones as they pass, the emotional toll that it takes not only on the patient but also the family and us, has been very difficult,” said Dr. Nida Stajan, Family Medical Doctor and Hospitalist for AdventHealth in Killeen.

Though difficult, it's that doctor-patient connection that pushes people into the medical field.

”We get to have an intimate connection with patients, sometimes even more intimate then say a pastor or family members,” said Dr. Elieson.

Some doctors felt that spark as a child watching doctors fight to save their family members.

”I got to see how doctors can heal patients. So for me, that was my true motivation to where I am today,” said Dr. Stajan.

Experts say the greatest weapon in the fight against COVID-19 is teamwork. As we near the end, doctors say it's important to not let up on mitigation methods.

”We have to work together as a community to make sure we’re actually able to go back to out normal lives like we used to,” said Dr. Stajan.

”We have seen bravery, we’ve seen courage, we've seen love, and that only happened because we pulled together,” said Dr. Elieson.