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The US Federal COVID-19 Public Health Emergency declaration ends today, less than a week after the World Health Organization announced an end to the COVID-19 Global Health Emergency.

Reflecting on the pandemic is difficult because with all the joyful memories and exciting opportunities comes a reminder of the fear, isolation, apprehension, and loss. My hope is that we can learn from the past and do better for our future to prevent history from repeating itself.

These are just a handful of moments capturing the pandemic:

• I was the first doctor to admit a COVID patient to my rehab hospital

• We had weekly temperature checks and COVID tests

• PPE was in high demand and low supply

• Social distancing meant virtual happy hours

• Flowers for each COVID patient adorned my hospital’s campus

• Uplifting chalk drawings and messages greeted me outside the hospital doors

• I advocated for Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine and prevented the spread of misinformation

• @amorsuiclothing and I created antimicrobial gloves to protect the community

• I joined the pandemic puppy bandwagon and rescued @dogtor.westley

• After graduating from residency and fellowship, I became board-certified in my specialty of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and started my first job as an attending physician

• Lastly, I got fully vaccinated

While the pandemic is over and we are much better equipped when it comes to treatment, COVID is still present so it is important to stay vigilant, especially around vulnerable populations.

Here’s to a brighter tomorrow. In the meantime, please stay up to date on immunizations and keep washing your hands!

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