When she said, "Today is Christmas" I hadn't asked her to recite any facts related to the Gregorian calendar or traditions of Christianity and I wasn't conducting a cognitive test of her orientation to time. When she said, "Today is Christmas" it wasn't a response to an inquiry with that three word sentence as an answer choice. She spoke those words into the phone after I stated the purpose for my call which was to establish a line of communication between doctor and homecare agency so that I could treat a disease and reduce a side effect.
Working for years as a home care physical therapist can get monotonous at times. The energy required to be positive, empathetic, energetic and an agent of positive change in people’s lives can be difficult to summon and can be draining.
While it is understandable why the Executive Order and Act were contemplated and enacted for hospitals and doctors, the application to nursing homes and nursing home staff is quite troubling, in light of the significant, long standing problems with staffing and infection control policies in nursing homes in New York. There is a push to have the immunity provisions repealed, but to date they are in effect.
I did not pick up this dental floss pick seen in this photo, which is exactly as I found it on the coffee table in front of the sofa, the home health aide’s bed in the home of a 95-year-old homebound woman.
I didn’t train to be a home health aide and I don’t have a certificate to work as one, but recently I did an eight hour shift because there was no one else. The job of a home health aide is simple yet complex.
In March, our conversations were focused on personal protective equipment, infection prevention and control policies and how we as a team could protect our caregivers from being exposed to the virus as much humanly possible.