Alex Harding


A Doctor’s View From the Front Line of the Omicron Wave

My phone buzzed with alerts about record-setting case numbers as I rushed between patients. A pile of tiny bottles with swabs floating in pink liquid accumulated while awaiting PCR testing. Patients with coughs and sniffles lined up outside the door, waiting to be seen. My shift as an internal medicine physician yesterday in MGH Chelsea’s urgent care facility reminded me...
Read More

What We Know About COVID-19, and What We Don’t

He or she will have had fever and chills for the past few days, severe fatigue, muscle aches, and cough. They have no interest in food. They will have felt short of breath when doing the mildest of tasks, such as walking upstairs in their house. They might have had some lightheadedness and may say that they feel chest pain...
Read More

Bridging the Social Divide in the Pandemic

Halfway through an explanation to a patient I am treating for a suspected case of COVID-19, I realize I don’t know the Spanish term for “sanitizing wipes.” I’m in my new clinical home base, where Massachusetts General Hospital has cordoned off special care for COVID-19 patients. There are modular plastic walls and bright fluorescent lights. A few weeks ago, this...
Read More

Life on the Front Lines of the COVID-19 Pandemic

The Massachusetts General Hospital COVID-19 Surge Clinic is a converted parking garage normally used as the ambulance bay for the Emergency Department. It is isolated from the rest of the ED by two sets of sliding glass doors and can only be accessed by badge. The garage has blue fluorescent lights and no windows, making it impossible to tell day...
Read More