CAF Story | Great Scott! Corona colonel swaps laptop for swab

Video / July 10, 2020


It's a strange thing for me. I don't really have any fear working here. Maybe the first few days I did, cause, you know, we didn't know much about COVID and what the results were.

I'm Colonel Roger Scott and I'm a nurse practitioner. I've been in the regular forces for ten years, when I was young. When I left the regular forces, I just wanted to stay connected to the military. There was always something for me about being in the military. I decided to stay in the Reserve Force and here I am, year 36.

My regular job is not clinical full time. I'm a director in the headquarters and so, when they started and the extra clinical horsepower was needed, it was nice to come back and get to do patient care more full time as part of my regular job. We've been quietly back here swabbing our way now for a few months and taking care of the people so that they're fit and ready to go out and do the other part.

Typically, I'm the one that collects the swab if I'm the one seeing that particular patient, so after we've gone and confirmed the history, we'll get all gowned up. You had to wash your hands. It's always about hand-washing these days. We tell our patients to wash their hands. We wash our hands a lot. We've got a big blue gown that we put on, that's protective, pop on a mask. The goggles go on or face shield, put on your gloves, and then you can go in and do the exam and collect the swab. I see patients after they've been assessed by one of our medics. The medics would bring them in and do a quick assessment set of vital signs, that sort of thing. And then now, we forward them either to me or to the physician assistant or the medical officer. From the point that I see them, they're already in one of our rooms where we're going to assess them. When it comes to the swab, we do the swab. So it's just a small little swab that goes into the nostril to the back of the throat. You give it a few spins to make sure that you pick up what you need to and then that's it.

My brother, who is a Chief Warrant Officer, he thinks it's okay as long as I'm safe, but he understands the idea that you do what you have to do in the CAF. My mom doesn't like it very much at all, cause she is not allowed to come visit me and she's also very worried that I'm going to get sick.

My mom is a quilter and she downed tools from quilting and found a pattern online to start making masks. And just about everybody that works in my directorate at NDHQ, most of the staff here, have all been the recipients of one of my mom's new handmade masks. So that made here feels like she's doing something to help out as well and I think made her feel a little bit better about the fact that I'm here.

Working here doing this COVID testing, this frontline response, for me, it's been satisfying. This gives me an opportunity to feel like I'm doing just a little bit more. It's just another part of what I do as part of my job as a healthcare provider and it felt good to be part of it.

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