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Local photographer among the first to document the COVID-19 pandemic, the first images were taken at Lee Health

FORT MYERS

See the pandemic through the lens.

A local photographer was one of the first to show the world what the inside of the COVID-19 zone is like.

In March 2020, Kinfay Moroti was allowed into the COVID-19 ward at Lee Health.

As a wave of uncertainty sweeps across the globe, Moroti is certain of one thing: He wants to document it. His images give a personal look at this public health crisis.

“When it started to affect the local community and the people in the community, I reached out to Lee Health and said, hey, you know, what if we captured these documentary moments? this?” Moroti said.

He has been granted access. He may have been the first editorial photographer in the county to enter the COVID zone when Lee Health allowed him into their world.

“At the time, not a lot of people knew about COVID and a lot of hospital systems were uncertain about what we had to communicate… how much of our stories we shared,” said Moroti.

Lee Health gave him the carte blanche to film what he saw while keeping the patient a secret while preserving the history.

“They don’t really dictate to me what I can or can’t shoot, they can explain to me what I’m seeing,” Moroti said.

A photo captures the moment a nurse wearing heavy protective gear ties a rope underneath the door to the room of a critically ill COVID-19 patient.

“They don’t want to keep this door open, because that increases the chance for germs,” ​​he said.

Moroti shares the rights to use the images with the medical system. He is reviewing a book so more people can see these snapshots in time.

“They can see a lot of hardship in those moments but I think when they stop looking at those moments, they will say that someone tried to help them,” Moroti said.

The pictures are raw and real, including one of the pictures of a hospital chaplain at the patient’s bed.

“He was praying for her and then he was trying to answer her questions,” Moroti said.

Moroti captures fear and courage, life and death.

“His situation was dire and the nurse’s touch was ‘I’m here, I’m with you, whether you come or not, I’m here”, he describes one images.

Moroti took thousands of pictures, looking for moments that could define a collective crisis. The pandemic, work in progress, is his lifelong story.

“I am a relationship person,” Moroti said. “Life is about relationships, and the efforts of the nurses and doctors, as they are trying to have a relationship that saves the patient’s life. That’s what I think my heart goes first and then my eyes follow.

“It was quite possibly one of the most meaningful moments I have captured in my career… It was truly a meaningful experience with so much gratitude.”

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https://www.winknews.com/2022/02/10/local-photographer-among-first-to-document-covid-19-pandemic-first-images-taken-at-lee-health/ Local photographer among the first to document the COVID-19 pandemic, the first images were taken at Lee Health

Tom Vazquez

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