An elderly woman cycles through Kalynivka. All public transport in the town has been suspended. Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine

Andriy Dubchak, a photojournalist with RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service, returned to his hometown of Kalynivka recently to find it transformed after an outbreak of COVID-19 among hospital staff.

A military-style tent outside Kalynivka’s central hospital. There have been 37 coronavirus cases reported among medical staff since a 79-year old local woman was admitted in early April with the infection before doctors and nurses began wearing protective equipment. The woman has since died. Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
A military-style tent outside Kalynivka’s central hospital. There have been 37 coronavirus cases reported among medical staff since a 79-year old local woman was admitted in early April with the infection before doctors and nurses began wearing protective equipment. The woman has since died. Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
A medical worker collects supplies dropped off at Kalynivka’s hospital. The facility is now effectively sealed off from the outside world. Waste is picked up and supplies are dropped off by people who avoid direct contact with the staff inside. Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
A medical worker collects supplies dropped off at Kalynivka’s hospital. The facility is now effectively sealed off from the outside world. Waste is picked up and supplies are dropped off by people who avoid direct contact with the staff inside. Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
Serhiy Kozyrev, a doctor inside the hospital who contracted the coronavirus, speaks with photographer Dubchak by telephone. Kozyrev described watching one after another of his staff fall prey to the virus. “I want everything to end soon” Kozyrev said. "I'm worried about my wife and daughter." He vowed to return to work treating patients as soon as he is cleared to, saying "I'll be back." Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
Serhiy Kozyrev, a doctor inside the hospital who contracted the coronavirus, speaks with photographer Dubchak by telephone. Kozyrev described watching one after another of his staff fall prey to the virus. “I want everything to end soon” Kozyrev said. “I’m worried about my wife and daughter.” He vowed to return to work treating patients as soon as he is cleared to, saying “I’ll be back.” Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
A woman walks past the entrance to the hospital in Kalynivka. Dubchak says the town of 20,000 people where he grew up has been transformed by the virus. Streets are largely empty and police in patrol cars use loudspeakers to urge people to stay indoors.  Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
A woman walks past the entrance to the hospital in Kalynivka. Dubchak says the town of 20,000 people where he grew up has been transformed by the virus. Streets are largely empty and police in patrol cars use loudspeakers to urge people to stay indoors. Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
Locals keep their distance as they wait in line outside a pharmacy. One resident of Kalynivka said the town’s elderly residents initially poked fun at people wearing face masks "then, as the situation developed, everyone quickly adopted [the masks]." Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
Locals keep their distance as they wait in line outside a pharmacy. One resident of Kalynivka said the town’s elderly residents initially poked fun at people wearing face masks “then, as the situation developed, everyone quickly adopted [the masks].” Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
Maryna, a shopkeeper in Kalynivka, told RFE/RL that the uncertainty of the economic situation has changed people's buying habits. "Before the quarantine people might come to buy bread, butter, and sausage," she said. "Now they just buy bread."  Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
Maryna, a shopkeeper in Kalynivka, told RFE/RL that the uncertainty of the economic situation has changed people’s buying habits. “Before the quarantine people might come to buy bread, butter, and sausage,” she said. “Now they just buy bread.” Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
An elderly woman cycles through Kalynivka. All public transport in the town has been suspended.  Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
An elderly woman cycles through Kalynivka. All public transport in the town has been suspended. Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
 Kalynivka's central market.   Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
Kalynivka’s central market. Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
Valentyna Mykhayilivna sells seeds at a marketplace in Kalynivka. "I live on what I sell here, but now there are no more people," she says. "There’s no income. It’s time to just lay low."  Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
Valentyna Mykhayilivna sells seeds at a marketplace in Kalynivka. “I live on what I sell here, but now there are no more people,” she says. “There’s no income. It’s time to just lay low.” Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
At a butcher's shop, residents of Kalynivka told RFE/RL that the Ukrainian government was providing financial support to some workers until April 26. "What comes next is unknown," one worried resident said.  Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
At a butcher’s shop, residents of Kalynivka told RFE/RL that the Ukrainian government was providing financial support to some workers until April 26. “What comes next is unknown,” one worried resident said. Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
A woman walks past a sign saying "I love Kalynivka." Dubchak says there are many unanswered questions about the pandemic -- like how the coronavirus arrived in the town, why so many medical staff have gotten sick, when Kalynivka's quarantine will end, and how the looming economic crisis will be managed.  Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
A woman walks past a sign saying “I love Kalynivka.” Dubchak says there are many unanswered questions about the pandemic — like how the coronavirus arrived in the town, why so many medical staff have gotten sick, when Kalynivka’s quarantine will end, and how the looming economic crisis will be managed. Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
But the RFE/RL photojournalist says that, while the virus is upending life in his hometown, many residents are "reverting to a traditional survival tactic in times of crisis." They are "planting potatoes."   Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine
But the RFE/RL photojournalist says that, while the virus is upending life in his hometown, many residents are “reverting to a traditional survival tactic in times of crisis.” They are “planting potatoes.” Photographer Andriy Dubchak / Ukraine

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