Blimi Marcus DNP RN Profile picture
Patriot 🇺🇸 Orthodox Jewish. Oncology NP. Editor & Professor. EBP. Palliative/Hospice Care. Medical Marijuana. Vaccines Work. Books 📚
Joshua Cypess Profile picture 1 added to My Authors
May 1 4 tweets 1 min read
I gave Bubby a private screening of #ShotInTheArm and she sat spellbound for 90 minutes.

Then she gave me her review: 1. “You’re in it a lot!”

I nod.

“Also when you’re sick, you’re in it.”

I nod.

“You look terrible there.”

I nod.

“Your dining room likes very nice.”
Apr 29 9 tweets 2 min read
I am heading home to NY now.

And I have a little secret:

I am not afraid of getting sick with COVID. I had COVID, I am vaccinated, I am boosted.

If I get COVID, all the evidence points to my not getting severely ill.

Here’s what scares me: getting Long COVID.

1/ Image I am not only the recipient of vaccine-related questions from friends and strangers around the world.

I am also the recipient of numerous panicked messages from people with ongoing debility after recovering from COVID.

This terrifies me.

Apr 29 5 tweets 2 min read
I just tried to check in for my @JetBlue flight to NY tomorrow to find out it was cancelled… and I was never informed.

An 80-minute phone wait later, and I spent $256 for a 1-way ticket instead, on another airline.

This is really bad service. My booked flight Image
Mar 3 9 tweets 2 min read
A 🧵 with a point:

Many of you know I lost my beloved brother to brain cancer three years ago.

He was diagnosed at age 22, died at 32. Until the last year of his life, he had all of his faculties; he even became a pilot as a hobby, cleared by an FAA physician. He has 3 sons. One year before he died, he tried immunotherapy, which caused inflammation (which is what it does), and inflammation in the brain causes brain damage.

He lost his speech.

He lost his right side.

He lost his peripheral vision.

But his cognition remained perfect.
Feb 25 4 tweets 1 min read
Today at the cancer clinic:

Me: I notice you’re not vaccinated… are you afraid?

Her: Yeah, too many questions. I figured I’d wait to see what happens.

Me: I understand. I hope you stay safe! You do have some health issues that would make you high risk for severe COVID. Her: Oh, I caught COVID.

Me: Oh. I guess you did ok then?

Her: Wellll I was in the hospital actually for a bit. Trouble breathing.

Me: oh my. Well, I’m glad you’re alright! Hopefully it provided you with some immunity.

Her: Not really. I had it twice.

Me: —-
Dec 30, 2021 4 tweets 2 min read
Be very angry. And do something with your anger.

Pay attention, believe survivors, speak up, donate, demand change, talk to your children. Demand more of frum journalism, of rabbis, of leaders, of yourself.

Also, don’t attend the funerals of rapists. 1. Donate: to @ZAAKAHNY, the only organization that has NOT silenced survivors and attempted to prevent legal recourse for survivors.

2. Email:

Demand that rape and Walder be discussed
Dec 30, 2021 4 tweets 2 min read
Where did the line “vaccinated people transmit COVID just like unvaccinated people” stem from?

A study that found that AT A SINGLE POINT IN TIME vaccinated people had an equal viral load of the virus in their noses as unvaccinated people.

1/x… Then, as delta surged and breakthrough cases increased, the CDC acknowledged that vaccinated people CAN transmit COVID.

Multiple studies found that vaccinated people were NOT as infectious & did NOT shed the virus like unvaxxed people, but people conveniently ignore that.

Nov 5, 2021 5 tweets 1 min read
During a busy clinic day this week at the academic billion-dollar-budget cancer center I’ve transitioned to where patients have coiffed do’s and discreetly monogrammed designer purses, I received a distressed call from my prior secretary. She called from the underserved community cancer clinic I loved but left due to overbooking, understaffing, and never ending work that characterizes community clinics with few resources. I worked M-F, chol hamoed, erev Yom Tov, and it wasn’t sustainable.
Nov 2, 2021 7 tweets 2 min read
I hate giving chemotherapy to my dying patients. Up to half of terminal patients receive chemotherapy within 30 days of death, and palliative chemo in terminal patients is associated with more suffering and sooner death. So, I hate giving chemo to my dying patients. However we’ve moved away from a paternalistic model of care to one of patient autonomy and shared decision making, so the patients get to decide and I respect and honor their decisions.

And then I bear witness to their slow death before my eyes.
Oct 4, 2021 5 tweets 1 min read
A few months ago I was removed from the very nursing organization I used to be president of. The Orthodox Jewish Nurses Org board wouldn’t dignify me with a conversation; they simply told me that nurses in the 2,500+ group “felt unsafe” with my presence and I was removed. Being that all I post is public health data, and I had never violated rules or received warnings before, I don’t know why this occurred.

Being that I had been President for 2 years, began their scholarly journal, & assisted with organizational restructuring, this is perplexing.
Oct 3, 2021 9 tweets 2 min read
A post, from 2019

Rosh Hashana passed in usual fashion. Delicious food, the usual company, & beautiful weather too warm for everyone’s new fall clothes.

And then Aharon (4) refused to let me go to shul, even when I swore that I’ll return to pick him up to hear the shofar. He stood before me in tears holding a motley bunch of clothes, begging to come along. His sister stood nearby, dressed & waiting to go.

With 2 hours to go before Shofar, I nodded. We dressed & packed.

We packed for a journey more appropriate to space than for 1 block to shul.
Sep 26, 2021 7 tweets 2 min read
March 2020

In between hospital shifts I head to my butcher. We’re in lockdown, so the streets are ghostly, masked individuals flitting in and out of necessary shops.

I’m in an N95, eye shields, and gloves. I’m exposed to COVID for 12-hour shifts and I need to be careful.

As I pile chicken on the counter, I’m on the phone, advising the nth person how to care for their loved one with COVID.

“When they can no longer speak in full sentences, call Hatzalah,” I urge. “I’ll be there soon to check him and I’ll send a script for the cough.”

Aug 31, 2021 8 tweets 2 min read
One year ago a 7-foot tall black man came into my clinic for chemotherapy and howled like a child when the nurse stuck an IV into him.

Eyebrows raised, I approached him and asked if he was ok, since my adult patients rarely howl.

He grinned at me sheepishly and explained: He used to run with a wild crowd and he abused cocaine. But when his friends switched to injecting heroin, he knew it was a terrible idea, and he would talk himself into a needle phobia until he truly feared needles.

“My friends all died and here I am,” he said ruefully.
Aug 9, 2021 5 tweets 2 min read
I’m excited for the academic year to start and I’m glad CUNY is mandating vaccines. College students have died of COVID and students who cluster in campuses can bring COVID back to family and friends. With the new surge this is one way to keep people safe. This being said, many people are still afraid of being vaccinated. My inbox is open if you have questions.

Vaccine card fraud and fraudulent exemptions are being sought by people who have no intentions of getting vaccinated. This is a poor move for several reasons:
Aug 9, 2021 5 tweets 1 min read
An Ode to the 9th Floor

I’m not always calm at work.
I try to be-
Amidst the death
The scared patients
The exasperating family
The wavering choices.

But sometimes I get angry - when the elevator opens on the 9th floor
Where the walls are colorful
And Cinderella walks by. I was mad
When I grabbed a quick lunch in the cafeteria
And saw a mom wheedling her baby
Weakly lying back in a stroller
Tube up her nose
Small scalp glinting
Refusing a bite of banana.
Jul 28, 2021 4 tweets 1 min read
Me: Hi can I get approval for a MUGA scan please?

Insurance agent: Y tho

Me: My patient had reduced EF 6 weeks ago and we need a short interval repeat.

I.A.: When was the last echo?

Me: … 6 weeks ago

I.A: What was her EF?

Me: 50-55%

I.A: That’s within normal range Me: Not really. It dropped from 77%

I.A: Still within the normal range.

Me: She is 42 with metastatic breast cancer on hormonal therapy with a significant decrease in heart function CAN I GET APPROVAL PLEASE

I.A. (Testily): Please give me dates and results for last 6 ECHOS.
Jul 28, 2021 5 tweets 1 min read
This is an insane week for the pandemic.

Cases are raging and vaccinated people are getting sick too.

The vaccine was created for the Wuhan strain, and it worked against several strains since - but it’s less effective against the delta variant. So far US and UK data shows it’s still in the 80% effective range, and Israel is still crunching their numbers.

Masking is recommended again, and hospitals are filling up again.

If you feel sick and think you have a cold - get tested.
Jul 27, 2021 7 tweets 2 min read
I know this is purely anecdotal and observational but maybe it’ll help some folks feel better about getting vaccinated.

I care for several hundred cancer patients at my clinic and i got them all vaccinated with the help of some volunteers who secured them appointments. Cancer patients know what’s up: they possess none of the arrogance and disregard for disease shown by so many others. They understand immune systems and susceptibility. And they have long, close relationships with me, which helped in forging trust and discussing the vaccine.
Jul 19, 2021 4 tweets 1 min read
My inbox today, after I closed a thread and blocked 2 people for calling me fundamentalist and assuring me that I am oppressed even if I think I’m not:

“I thought you were more open minded. I thought you were different. But really how are you different than every other religious fundamentalist? Your words said you have choice yet your actions proved otherwise when you decided to shut down the conversation and block all of us. You get to walk from this entire conversation on social media with zero repercussions yet those who have been shunned
Jul 19, 2021 5 tweets 1 min read
Orthodox Judaism is magnificent for many people.

But it is primarily meaningful if you are part of a nuclear family and fit into a mold. This is where some of the the benefits and strengths of Orthodoxy shine in the form of communal acceptance, kinship, loving-kindness. Where you break an arm & Hatzalah shows up, calls an orthopedist and segues you into the ED. Where you are hospitalized & receive package of hot meals. Where your nephew doesn’t have a father but 3 uncles show up to his siyum. Where your community holds you up when you’re broken.
Jul 16, 2021 17 tweets 10 min read
Orthodox Jewish women (even the ultra-Orthodox like myself) have a richer life and more opportunities than you’d think.

A pictorial thread 🧵

We get degrees. We adore our kids ImageImageImageImage