In one Beirut hospital, coronavirus warriors through their own eyes

A picture taken by a nurse on May 8, 2020 at the Hotel Dieu de France Hospital in the Lebanese capital Beirut, shows a colleague playing the guitar during a break in the coronavirus section. (AFP)

In the harshly-lit corridors of a Beirut hospital, a team of nurses has been snapping pictures with their mobile phones of life behind the scenes of the battle against the coronavirus.

The images taken at the Hotel-Dieu de France Hospital in the Lebanese capital and selected by AFP for a photo project offer a glimpse of their epic struggle against the pandemic.

Visit our dedicated coronavirus site here for all the latest updates.

A picture taken by a nurse on April 9, 2020 at the Hotel Dieu de France Hospital, shows a colleague joining a patient in prayer in the coronavirus section of the hospital in Beirut’s eastern suburbs. (AFP)

A picture taken by a nurse on April 9, 2020 at the Hotel Dieu de France Hospital, shows a colleague joining a patient in prayer in the coronavirus section of the hospital in Beirut’s eastern suburbs. (AFP)

Exhaustion, prayer, pride and a strong team spirit - the photos chronicle the emotional roller coaster these nurses have been through in two months.

As they prepare to receive another accolade for their front line role with the May 12 marking of International Nurses Day, their smiles still show behind the masks and goggles.

But many of them have gone weeks without seeing their families and, while infections have remained relatively limited in Lebanon, they fear a second wave will flood their wards.

A picture taken by a nurse on April 30, 2020 at the Hotel Dieu de France Hospital, shows a colleague staring at family pictures displayed on a window behind a statue of the Virgin Mary in the coronavirus section of the hospital. (AFP)

A picture taken by a nurse on April 30, 2020 at the Hotel Dieu de France Hospital, shows a colleague staring at family pictures displayed on a window behind a statue of the Virgin Mary in the coronavirus section of the hospital. (AFP)

“People don’t understand the difficulties we face here,” said Sylvia Beudjekian, the head nurse in her unit at Hotel Dieu, one of the main hospitals in the Lebanese capital.

“Everybody’s tired. We do much more than administer drugs to patients, we look after people who do not have their families by their side to battle sickness,” she said.

A picture taken by a nurse on April 30, 2020 at the Hotel Dieu de France Hospital, shows colleagues surrounding a patient as they pose for a souvenir photograph in the coronavirus COVID-19 section of the hospital. (AFP)

A picture taken by a nurse on April 30, 2020 at the Hotel Dieu de France Hospital, shows colleagues surrounding a patient as they pose for a souvenir photograph in the coronavirus COVID-19 section of the hospital. (AFP)

Read more:

Coronavirus: As infections surge, Lebanon fears second wave

Coronavirus ‘end date’ in UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar predicted by Singapore researchers

Lab or wet market: Where did the COVID-19 coronavirus come from?

Drinking coffee, playing guitar or celebrating Easter - the pictures document some of the little down time they have enjoyed since COVID-19 grounded them at their workplace and permanently clad them in white and blue protective gear.

A picture taken by a nurse on April 30, 2020 at the Hotel Dieu de France Hospital. (AFP)

A picture taken by a nurse on April 30, 2020 at the Hotel Dieu de France Hospital. (AFP)

“We’ve laughed and we’ve cried and we’ve learnt a lot,” Beudjekian said.

“We will continue to do everything we can to be there for everyone but people should be very careful and stay home.”

SHOW MORE
Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:58 - GMT 06:58
Top