Ridiculous: Oregon Nurse Loses Job Over Social Media Post That Doesn’t Take COVID Seriously Enough

It’s not good enough that you’re professional on the job, wear your PPE, follow orders, and treat patients like gold. No, now if you’re a nurse you’re expected to give the Chinese coronavirus the deference required by perfect strangers looking at your personal social media accounts. Or else.

Welcome to the social car crash at the intersection of Politically Correct Way and Pandemic Avenue. Make a wrong move and it will cost you your job.

Such is the case at a Salem, Ore., hospital. Fox 12 reports that a relative of a former patient at Salem Health looked up a nurse’s social media account and found a TikTok message about COVID that she disagreed with. The woman reported the nurse for failing to be deferential enough in her discussion of the disease. “Cara” told Fox News 12 that she couldn’t “believe a nurse would do that, how ridiculous.”

The nurse’s crime? Posing on the TikTok app, in what looks to be a break room, wearing scrubs and a stethoscope, with the comment, “When my co workers find out I travel, don’t wear a mask when I am out, and my kids have play dates.” She also lip-synchs a song from “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.”

The nurse scrubbed her account, but not before several other people lambasted her on social media and complained about her.

The hospital issued a statement on its Facebook page on Saturday, saying that the nurse was too cavalier in her treatment of COVID and should have lied about what she really thinks about state lockdowns, wearing masks outside, and keeping her kids under lock and key. She should have conveyed messages only pre-approved by her employer or the state in order to make people around her happy. Just kidding. Here’s what the hospital really said when it initially placed the nurse on administrative leave:

Yesterday, a nurse employed with Salem Health posted a video on social media which displayed cavalier disregard for the seriousness of this pandemic and her indifference towards physical distancing and masking outside of work. This video has prompted an outcry from concerned community members. We want to thank those of you who brought this to our attention and assure you that we are taking this very seriously. This individual does not speak for Salem Health and has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation.

We also want to assure you that this one careless statement does not reflect the position of Salem Health or the hardworking and dedicated caregivers who work here.

Salem Health believes we all need to do our part to protect the vulnerable and stop the rapid spread of COVID-19. This includes requiring staff, patients and visitors to follow guidance from the CDC and others about mask wearing and social distancing. The COVID pandemic is serious and requires a serious response. And at Salem Health we are very serious about our approach to COVID.

“Cara,” whose last name was not revealed, told Fox 12 her 83-year-old grandmother was receiving cancer treatment last month. She said she doesn’t know if the nurse worked with her grandmother, but the mere possibility was “scary.”

The pandemic was always a concern, like, ‘oh what if she catches COVID because she’s having to go to this hospital multiple days a week for these treatments?’ But the thought it could’ve come from someone who was supposed to be taking care of her was just like, ‘wow OK, thanks.’

Cara – or should we just dispense with that and call her Karen? – decided at some point that the nurse shouldn’t be allowed to keep her job because of her thought crimes.

I would actually prefer she be removed permanently. It’s bad enough we have people going around day-to-day not really taking this seriously and not caring, but to me, this seems levels worse when it’s someone who should be actually educated on bare minimum virology and immunology.

It’s unclear how often the Salem hospital tests its employees for COVID, so we don’t know if the nurse is COVID-free or ever had it, which might provide some immunity. We assume she’s healthy and, at least until recently, was showing up to work. But it seems Karen has an issue with the nurse’s thoughts that she put out on social media. Karen’s unmistakable message is that everyone must take the pandemic as seriously as she does because … science! What if the nurse is right? That it’s ok to travel with your family. That it’s ok to go outside without a mask. That it’s ok to allow your children to play with other children who – science! – have an infinitesimal chance of acquiring the disease.

Is Karen’s issue scientific or political?

Asked and answered. On Monday, Fox 12 reported that the nurse and Salem Health have parted ways. It’s unclear if the hospital fired her on behalf of Karen and other complainants who saw the message on TikTok and crowdsourced the hospital’s HR department or if she left to get away from the embarrassment and bullying.