Sophie is a Health Care Assistant on the In-Patient Unit at Princess Alice Hospice. On 6 April 2020, during the Coronavirus pandemic, she wrote a poem.

I decided to write it after a late shift. It was my first shift during the pandemic, and a young lady passed away. I found that my usual way of caring had been taken away.

We are so used to caring through facial expressions and touch, and it had just been taken away. It felt really alien and harsh not being able to do those things, not only for the patient, but for her family.

Writing the poem really helped me to express and articulate what I was feeling at the time.

Sophie’s poem

We are sorry, sorry we can’t give you the care we are used to providing.
In a time where you need touch, smiles and comfort.
It’s been taken from us.
Just know that we want nothing more to be able to give you a hug.
Just know that behind these masks, we are showing emotion.
I know we look scary and all you want is to feel our hands on yours.
I know all you want is to see a comforting smile.
We know you want to see our faces.
See who’s looking after you and your loved one at the end.
We are sorry, sorry we can’t give you the comfort we are so used to providing.
Just know that behind these masks, we are with you.
Holding your hands and smiling.