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Dealing with death in the pandemic

Association of Anatomical Pathology Technology (AAPT) council member Martin Goddard on how his profession has coped during the pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in which we live. Our perceptions of healthcare and its availability has changed as COVID-19 has taken a grip, and the provision of healthcare that we once took for granted is now cherished like never before.

People have taken to the streets to bang pots and pans, supermarkets have made special provisions for exclusive access and those working within care settings have taken extra pride in their roles.

Whilst for many years the focus of healthcare has been on doctors and nurses, throughout the pandemic, many previously unseen professions are coming to the fore, and major news organisations such as the BBC, ITV and Sky have presented the many different staff groups who work in hospitals and other healthcare organisations.

Michelle Williams, a Mortuary Manager from Gloucestershire, says: “Public recognition for nurses and other undervalued professions was and still is exceptional during this pandemic; the focus on them is rightly deserved. What this pandemic has done has changed public perception of frontline staff.

She continues: “As anatomical pathology technologists (APTs) we have historically dealt with a great deal that is unspoken and have got used to being hidden away from the public. Although this is frustrating, we carry on with self-pride, accepting that our recognition comes directly from the families that we have contact with. I don’t believe that any of my colleagues would have felt anything but proud of the acknowledgement other professionals are receiving during this time, however, for my profession now to be noticed and heard is something we have all quietly hoped for for a long time.”

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Image Credit | Alamy

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