Kristin McKitish, MD at the Hoboken University Medical Center

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The world is in a very, very unique situation. Each day, more news surrounding COVID-19 comes to light, both on a local and national level. However, as we all continue to stay home, there are plenty of healthcare and essential workers who are working on the frontlines of this pandemic each and every day — and honestly, they deserve a serious shout out. One such hero is Kristin McKitish, MD — this former Hoboken resident + current Jersey City local is working right there on the frontlines of this pandemic each and every day. We got the chance to speak with Kristin to learn more about her job, what it’s like working on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic, and a whole lot more. Here is her story:

kristin mckitish hoboken university medicial center

What is your occupation? How long have you worked there?

I’m a second-year resident physician at Hoboken University Medical Center. I began July 1st, 2018.

What was your original career plan? How did you get into this career?

I’ve always planned to be in medicine — I can’t recall a time when I didn’t want to become a doctor.

So far, what has been the highlight of your career?

The beauty of medicine is that the highlights come every day, you just need to be present enough to see them.

See More: Maxim Casas, ER Nurse at Christ Hospital in Jersey City

What has been the hardest day/scariest day on the job?

The scariest thing we deal with collectively, day in and day out, is by far the uncertainty that any patient we encounter may or may not be the one who infects me or my colleagues, and in turn, our families.

Who is someone you look up to/your hero?

My mother will forever be my hero. I’m the oldest of nine and yet she somehow never missed a game, award ceremony, or any other function. I wouldn’t be half the physician or mother I am now had I not watched her raise my younger siblings. She’s the most selfless human I know and taught me the importance of family, laughter, a good heart and, most importantly, good desserts.

kristin mckitish medical doctor

What qualities does a person need to do your job?

Dedication, persistence, passion, and a strong work ethic, all qualities currently being demonstrated by physicians globally. A love for caffeine usually helps, too.

What is something that people wouldn’t expect about what you do on a daily basis?

The amount of stairs climbed since I refuse to take the elevators — I think I average roughly 40 flights a day in the hospital.

How do you spend your free time?

My {very little} free time is always spent with my two boys, MJ and Camden (ages three and a half and two} and amazing husband Brian.

Are there organizations that you feel strongly about and support? Tell us about them.

We have some really great local organizations. In Jesus Name, in particular, is one that I’ve had patients utilize, so I try to donate to them as often as possible.

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced as a healthcare worker during this pandemic?

The hospital really is a gloomy place right now with an immense amount of challenges and frustrations — the media is saturated with stories displaying this. We are truly doing our best with what we have, exactly where we are.

So instead, I’ll spread the most heartwarming moments I’ve witnessed: seeing food in the ER from a different local restaurant all day, every day with thankful and encouraging notes attached; my local gym personally dropping off equipment since work prevented me from picking it up myself; my local yoga studio giving me a free membership so I can attend virtual classes on my own time; the Hoboken Mommies group pulling through {as always} with mask donations and all the love and encouragement; and “have a coffee on me” virtual gift cards from friends and family.

kristin mckitish doctor

What are the most common symptoms you’re coming across?

Fever, shortness of breath {especially with exertion}, cough, and body aches — all slowly worsening over the course of a few days.

What is one thing you want the public to know about the virus?

This too shall pass. Until then, wash your hands, work out, get some sleep, eat your veggies, drink your water, take your vitamins, and stay home with your families so I can eventually be home with mine.

Do you know anyone personally affected by the virus?

Of course, I think we all do! Luckily the majority who contract COVID-19 recover with the usual home remedies of fluids, rest, Tylenol, and TLC.

Read More: Meet the 2 ICU Nurses That Moved From Colorado to Hoboken to Help COVID-19 Patients

 How can we help? What can we do? 

Please keep reminding your followers to help our Hoboken small businesses stay afloat — medicine will make it through COVID-19, but some of our beloved small businesses may not.

If someone wanted to donate food/supplies/etc to you/your team, how could they do that?

I always defer all food donations to the ER directly. As far as supplies, feel free to email me to coordinate drop-off or {a socially distant} pick-up: Kristin.McKitish@carepointhealth.org.

Have a health care provider you want to submit for a feature? Email their contact info to hello@hobokengirl.com!

PS: Make sure to go to your windows/balconies nightly to cheer all of our incredible healthcare professionals at 7:00PM each evening.

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Arielle is a born-and-bred Jersey girl and like a true NJ native, half her diet consists of bagels and the other half pizza. As a graduate of both American University and City, University of London, she’s been a passionate writer ever since she wrote her first “book” in the first grade. When she’s not furiously typing away at her keyboard, she spends her time ticking places off of her “to travel to” list, trying any and all new foods, and trying to stop herself from spending too much money at Zara.


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