Mercy Health Muskegon’s Mercy Campus / Courtesy Mercy Health (Photo: Supplied)

Inside Mercy Health’s gleaming new hospital tower along U.S. 31 in Muskegon, four full floors are now filled with COVID-19 patients.

More people are in the emergency room, waiting for beds to open up. Nurses are working grueling 16-hour shifts, racing between rooms, trying to keep up with the growing onslaught of sick patients.

This story was co-published with Bridge Magazine.

“It has been so stressful and chaotic and heartbreaking, to say the least,” said one hospital worker who helps treat COVID-19 patients at Mercy Health Muskegon.

“You have to put aside the tears, the heartbreak, because that’s when your patients need you the most. You kind of have to put aside everything to focus on them,” the hospital worker said.  

The worker didn’t have permission from the hospital to speak publicly, and asked that their name not