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Infectious disease specialist comes out of retirement for 2nd time to help with COVID-19 surge

Dr. Anne Sacks-Berg is an infectious disease specialist who is coming out of retirement for a second time to help battle the pandemic at Huntington Hospital.

News 12 Staff

Dec 3, 2020, 1:45 AM

Updated 1,297 days ago

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Nearly 4,000 New Yorkers are now in hospitals due to COVID-19. It's numbers like these that are bringing some health care workers out of retirement -- and one local specialist to come back to work once again.
Dr. Anne Sacks-Berg is an infectious disease specialist who is coming out of retirement for a second time to help battle the pandemic at Huntington Hospital.
Sacks-Berg retired late last year after working 29 years at Huntington Hospital. She planned to travel the world and spend time with her baby grandson. But when COVID-19 first hit in March, she came out of retirement to help with the first surge.
"I'm happy to do it. I knew it was inevitable, we were going to have a second wave," says Sacks-Berg. "In fact, when I left in the spring after the first surge, I told them not to get rid of my desk, that I'd be back."
Sacks-Berg says she didn't want to sit out such a major event.
"I trained and I live my whole life as an infectious disease doctor and then there's the biggest infectious disease event in my lifetime, going on just once after I retired," says Sacks-Berg.
She helped with the care of front-line workers who got sick during the first surge. She retired when the curve flattened in May.
This week when Gov. Andrew Cuomo called on health care retirees to consider returning to the front lines, she was quickly ready to get back at work. She'll be back on Monday.
"It's really hard to sit by on the sidelines when something like this is going on," she says.
Hospital officials say her expertise in infectious diseases will not only help patients during the pandemic, but it will also boost morale for staff.
"When they see former doctors and nurses like Dr. Sacks-Berg that don't need to be here, that have been in retirement come back to assist, they all recognize that what we do is a calling," says Huntington Hospital Executive Director Dr. Nick Fitterman.ReplyForwardKK


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