Phillipe Nover: UFC fighter VS Covid-19

(Photo by Buda Mendes/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Phillipe Nover, the former UFC fighter, decided to change the UFC octagon with the hospital halls where he’s trying to help Covid-19 Patients. After his UFC career, the fighter decided to change his battlefield and has entered Brooklyn’s Hospital halls as a nurse practitioner.

When he went to the New York City hospital, he was surprised to come across a familiar face, another nurse that was close to his age. Nover knew that man was healthy and fit as himself, but now he was seeing that man exhausted, he wished him well and put a brave face, but deep down, he knew that virus was sweeping through NYC fast, and that it could take him out also. At the hospital, he was a witness to many changes since the beginning of the Covid-19 in the United States, which was back in mid-March.

Phillipe and his colleagues have been preparing for “the apex,” for two weeks, which will come when the number of deaths and infections reaches its highest point. Here’s one of the nurse practitioner’s personal statements on why he decided to become a nurse practitioner and help out the people in the first line of the fight against this deadly virus: ” In 1 or 2 weeks, we could be facing a crash of the American healthcare system.” States 36-year-old Phillipe. “The tipping point is when we’ll have to be the ones deciding who gets the ventilators and who doesn’t. We’re preparing for another Italy or Spain.” Said the MMA fighter.

Due to fears that there won’t be enough masks and gowns, the staff decided to slowly close down non-essential services. Phillipe Nover, whose regular workplace is in the Cardiology sector, decided to volunteer for the sectors where they needed a lot of help in manpower, i.e., ER and ICU.

He had some practice in the ER department because of his work there from 2005 until 2008. Initially, the Brooklyn hospital designated half of the ER as an isolation area for patients with Covid-19, but their efforts were made irrelevant due to the virus’s fast spread. Today, there are people all around the Brooklyn hospital, with people walking around everywhere. Even the hallways are full of Covid-19-infected people. Even critical patients are scattered throughout the hospital halls and are connected to bulky transport monitors. Now, the ICU is a department completely dedicated to Covid-19 patients.

Nover stated that when they would get an influx of patients in the past, it would settle down quickly after, and they were able to catch a break. But now, it doesn’t seem to be slowing down.

The virus is highly contagious, and exposure to the virus is a highly debated topic amongst hospital workers and nurse practitioners. And, just like most hospitals in the USA, a major problem in the fight against Covid-19 is the lack of personal protective equipment such as gowns, facemasks, etc. Nover said that the medical personnel is advised to write their name on the protective equipment that they are wearing and that they’re told to ration it as much as possible.

It was only two years ago when this nurse practitioner was inflicting damage to his opponents, but today, he’s working on repairing the damage. Back in 2008, Nover got to the final of the UFC Reality show, The Ultimate Fighter, and even though he didn’t win it, he managed to get a spot into the Featherweight division in UFC. In his 14-year long MMA career, Phillipe Nover has fought in 23 professional fights, ten of which were in the UFC.

When he got to his prime in the fighting career, he decided to leave nursing for some time. But later decided against it and started balancing the two careers just like he did when he was at the beginning of his fighting career back in 2003. He commented on this, saying that he was a pretty physical boy and wanted to try every sport, from soccer to boxing, But decided to start with martial arts because both of his parents wanted him to do that.

When he was only nine years old, Nover started training Traditional Martial Arts such as kung fu, and jeet Kune do. But, he decided to try out Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu after speaking to a friend about it. He was determined to continue with Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu after his first training session. A few years after he started training, he managed to earn the black belt under his coach Alexandre “Soca” Freitas.

Nover comes from a nurse family, with his father being a nurse, whose sole goal was to make his patients smile and would gladly make a fool out of himself in order to achieve that. Nover remembers that both he and his brother would dress up in scrubs playing patients and doctors with each other back when they were kids.

Phillipe graduated from high school back in 2002, and after that, his father advised him to start nursing school because he thought that Nover would make a great nurse. And he was surprised at how much he liked nursing school. As he says, being in martial arts made him want to learn not only about sick people, but also how to become as healthy as possible.

As a former professional fighter, Phillipe knows that he is healthy, and that is one of the reasons why he joined the ICU and ER as a volunteer, and he strongly believes that he will help in the process of decreasing the virus.


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