Sharon Praigrod, BHSc, RN
So a month so ago I wrote a small piece that no paper I sent it to wanted to print. At the time I wrote it I was sad, upset, angry, and felt left out. So I thought that maybe this is the place to post it.
WE CARE TOO:
If I were to honest of how I feel every time I watch the news coverage of the Horror Story we are living through, I would say I am feeling demonized by most of the coverage concerning Nursing Homes.
The media and the public need to remember the people we care for every day. They are old with medical issues, frail, scared, alone, and socially spaced. That means they cannot see their families or even their friends in the facility they are living in. So, staff becomes their family and friends, even with the phone calls and Face Time that the “Home” I work at does.
We all have our share of deaths. A few may not do things the right way, but 99% of us get it right, we care. Unlike hospitals where patients are short term, in Nursing Homes our residents can be with us for years. In Nursing Homes, we share the same risks hospitals employees do. We also share in the pain, tears, the sadness, and we worry about our residents and staff getting sick
So why don’t hear about what we do, how we work, the pain we go through. Or is the better media message to just put us all in one box. WE CARE for them like they are OUR FAMILY.
Where do you think all those patients go when they no longer need to be in the hospital, but can not yet go home? Many of them come to Nursing Homes, like the one I work in. We have three units devoted to COVID-19 patients, where we continue to care for them. The hospital starts the work, Nursing Homes help them get stronger so they can go home and yes in some cases they die when they are with us.
So, the next time you see or read a story about how many residents died in a Nursing Home or how one or two Nursing Homes mistreated those who died remember that is the exception not the rule. We who work in Nursing Homes care just as much as our brothers and sisters who work in Hospitals, please remember that and remember US.
Thank you all for doing what we do, for caring as we care, and giving as we give.
As a fellow former LTC nurse, I just want to say: thank you.
Sharon--thank you for sharing this important message. It's one that needs to be heard!