Donald Faison and Zach Braff are used to pretending to be doctors, but the Scrubs stars say they can't possibly comprehend what it's like to be a medical worker right now during the coronavirus outbreak.
"Just being a fake doctor, that was for me overwhelming, so I couldn’t imagine being on the front lines just now," Faison told BuzzFeed News' Twitter show AM to DM during an interview that aired Monday.
Braff and Faison starred on the medical sitcom from 2001 to 2010 as Dr. John Michael "J.D." Dorian and Dr. Christopher Turk, respectively. The actors, who are best friends in real life, are now hosting a podcast recapping the series, Fake Doctors, Real Friends, but that's been a challenge during quarantine.
"We actually were about to go into a studio and do the first one before all of this insanity happened," Braff said. "Then it switched to how do we do it remotely."
A frustrated Braff said he's been struggling while in lockdown because he wishes he could do more to actively help deal with the effects of the virus, such as assisting in building the tent hospital in New York City's Central Park.
"I wish I could be there helping them set this up and doing something," he said, "but yes, I understand what I need to do is stay at home."
He and girlfriend Florence Pugh, star of Little Women and Midsommar, are fostering a puppy while in lockdown, while Faison is focusing his attention on his two youngest children, ages 4 and 6.
"They miss school. I never ever in my life said, 'I miss school and I miss my friends,'" he said. "They truly miss their friends and they miss school and they miss the interaction with other children because we’re on lockdown and they just see each other."
Both actors said they hope people watching Scrubs think about the real-world medical workers sacrificing their health and safety.
"We did this drama/comedy for nine years and the whole idea was to show the lives of these people and how hard it is and the love and dedication they put into it," said Braff. "So now more than ever we celebrate them and their heroism."
"This is a new level of hero," added Faison. "For a long time we idolized superheroes that wore capes and big emblems on their chests. It’s been a long time since we’ve given the medical profession the kudos that they deserve, and it’s unfortunate that it’s taken this for us to recognize that."