School nurses face hard times; Working with covid

Noel Bailey, Reporter

     The school nurses at North Harford have been working directly against covid and have been dealing with everything that goes into trying to keep the schools safe.

     Ms. Charmain Bishop is the only school nurse in Harford County to be in school every day. There are kids coming into school every day even though COVID-19, North Harford had “the hub” set up at school for kids who didn’t have access to the internet at home.

     Bishop was in school every day all through covid with students from elementary to high school coming in to use the internet. “It was wonderful in one aspect” of her being in the school with people since “it was some sense of being normal.”

     The amount of students that go down to see her or the other nurses have gone up double since COVID-19 hit. “Not seeing too many students with increased illnesses” she’s mostly seeing people come to her office for contract tracing. “Way busier and see a lot more people, it really is a whole new aspect because of the contract tracing.”

     Bishop has to be more aware and careful with people who come up to her health suite and tell her they have a stuffy nose or sore throat now since those are symptoms of COVID-19 “we kinda think that into a whole different thing, so we are now being much much much busier.”

     Contract tracing is something totally new that the school nurses had to learn because of COVID-19 now. They have a whole system of lists of everyone so they can find people and who they sit next to everywhere. “Contract tracing is very time consuming since you have to track down so many kids.” Staff meetings were made about how contract tracing should be done.

     “I would like to see 100% of people vaccinated” Bishop says, when you get vaccinated you don’t have to quarantine at all. “I think vacancies are what’s going to make this go away but I think the strategies we have right now for school are the best we can do right now.” 

     “Wearing masks is going to help us a lot right now.” Mandates about the masks were sent out through the whole Harford county board of education system telling all Harford county schools that all students, teachers, and staff have to wear them while being inside the school buildings.

     The school nurses have been working double with their regular school nurse duties and now with contract tracing and everything they have to do with covid procedures. “I can’t tell you how busy I am right now.”

     The beginning of school is a very hectic time of year for the nurses since they are getting everyones paper work for the new school year then everyone who plays sports papers “it’s usually really really busy.”

     The school nurses have worked double this year with all the covid procedure on top of their regular work they have to do.