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KANSAS CITY, Kan. – A Kansas City nurse was seen in what can be viewed as a juxtaposition of the job during the coronavirus pandemic, braiding a patient’s hair before putting the woman on a ventilator.

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Nurse Kara Purdum, who works as part of a dedicated COVID-19 intensive care unit at the University of Kansas Health System, is working six days a week because of a spike in cases and staff shortages, KMBC reported.

The state, like much of the country, is experiencing a surge in cases.

“They don’t understand how nasty this is and how ugly it is,” Purdum said. “And if they could see one patient go through what we see every day, I promise you everybody would social distance and wear masks appropriately just because nobody should see that.”

Hospitals in the system are under duress. In addition to the spiking caseloads, one has run out of staff and another has 152 workers out because they are infected with the coronavirus, KMBC reported.

Purdum said many of the families impacted by the coronavirus are regretful.

“Unfortunately, a lot of our patients don’t have the ability to talk,” Purdum said. “A lot of our patients are on ventilators so where we’re hearing that regret is through their family, through Zoom, talking to their family members and saying, ‘You know, I wish we would have done this. I wish we wouldn’t have went to our Thanksgiving dinner. I wish we would have stayed home from that wedding.’”

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