Kious Kelly, an assistant nursing manager at Mount Sinai West in Manhattan, has died from coronavirus, after reportedly being exposed to the disease due to a lack of personal protective equipment.
The New York Post reports: The shortage of safety gear at one Manhattan hospital is so dire that desperate nurses have resorted to wearing trash bags — and some blame the situation for the coronavirus death of a beloved colleague. A stunning photo shared on social media shows three nurses at Mount Sinai West posing in a hallway while clad in large, black plastic trash bags fashioned into makeshift protective garb. … Meanwhile, staffers at the hospital near Columbus Circle on Wednesday tied the lack of basic supplies there to the death of assistant nursing manager Kious Kelly, who tested positive for coronavirus about two weeks ago. Kelly, 48, was admitted to Mount Sinai’s flagship hospital on the Upper East Side on March 17 and died Tuesday night, the workers said.
Andy Humm memorialized Kelly at Gay City News: Just five weeks ago — before all of this — I was sent by New Alternatives for Homeless LGBT Youth, where I’m on the board, to look in on a client hospitalized in Mount Sinai who was in terrible pain and not getting proper care. The nurses and doctors were pleasant enough, but they were not giving the young man the relief he needed as he was in constant agony and could not even sip water. After about five hours of advocacy, Kious Kelly, the assistant nursing manager, showed up with a rainbow pin and a calm, caring manner and made things happen for the young man — getting him pain relief and pulling him back from the brink of wanting to take his own life. He was an angel to this troubled, homeless, African-American kid. On Wednesday, I read that due to a lack of personal protective equipment (PPE) — something that was a problem at Mount Sinai before all this — Kious was infected with COVID-19 two weeks ago and died the day before. … Today I’m mourning Kious Jordan Kelly, a 48-year old gay nurse manager who died from caring. I was only with him for 15 minutes, but it was enough to see his unique power of healing. An unforgettable character. Honor his memory by not letting even one more health care worker die.
Kelly’s sister, Marya Patrice Sherron, posted a heartbreaking response to his death:
Kelly’s nursing colleagues also remembered him fondly, and called for action. Read their posts below.