Continuing to care throughout COVID-19
Looking out for others and shielding and caring for those people who need help is more important than ever during the fight against COVID-19 across North East Lincolnshire.
Many have stepped up to help and the volunteer effort has been amazing, however for some people caring for the needs of others is something that they do all year round as a care worker.
Social care workers are providing a vital service and looking after the most vulnerable people in the community whether they live in a care/residential home or independently in their own homes. Often these people are elderly and have underlying health conditions that put them most at risk from the serious health complications that the coronavirus causes.
Despite the pressures, care workers across the county are continuing to respond to the needs of others and are doing an incredible job caring for those people who need it. They face many challenges during the current COVID-19 outbreak in order to protect both the residents and themselves from the virus, whilst continuing to provide quality care and much needed social contact for people.
Councillor Margaret Cracknell, portfolio holder for Health, Wellbeing and Adult Social Care at North East Lincolnshire Council said: “Care workers are the absolute backbone of our adult social care system. They provide care for so many people, keeping them company, cooking and making sure that they take the right medicine at the right time. Often the care workers are the only people that service users might see day to day.
“So thank you, now more than ever, to all care workers in our area. We are all so grateful to you for the tireless work you do.”
Care workers are already knowledgeable and experienced in using personal protective equipment and maintaining good hand hygiene when caring for people. They are currently following national guidelines and advice on social distancing where possible throughout their care services, to help stop the transmission of the virus and keep people safe.
Although care workers are following guidelines with regard to the use of personal protective equipment, local areas are still calling on the government to ensure that care providers have the same access to equipment as their NHS counterparts. Similarly, care providers are anxious to ensure that their workforce has access to testing for the virus in the same way that hospital staff have.
Rosaline Rouse, director/owner of Willow Homecare, explained, “We are proud of our team who are working tirelessly to ensure that all visits are remaining in place and thank you to all staff who have been full of compassion, kindness and integrity through this difficult time. They have stepped up to the pressures and have been working with all professional agencies, supporting people within their own homes delivering extra services such as shopping, collecting medication and ensuring that all of their needs are being met whilst they are in isolation from their families and friends and that they feel safe and are reassured, and they will continue to do this through this challenging time.”
Victoria Lawn, frontline care worker with Willow Homecare said,
“I’m extremely lucky as I work with a fantastic team that supports us, making sure we all have the correct PPE to protect ourselves and our service users, they give us the support we need when we’re having a bad day, sometimes just hearing someone say “you’re doing a great job, thank you for all you do and are doing” means the world to us and picks us back up again, and a little bit of recognition is all we ask for and goes a long way. We are looking after your loved ones to the best of our ability in such a difficult time.”
Julie Blake, frontline care worker with Willow Homecare said,
“I absolutely love my job, it’s an honour to do my job and I feel very privileged in what I do, I would not change it for the world. I am very close to all my clients and I will always go above and beyond for them, whatever they need. We are keeping our clients safe and keeping ourselves safe using PPE and keeping them informed of everything going on, and reassuring them when they feel anxious about the COVID-19 situation. We are all team players and we are all in it together.”
Carol McKenzie is a team leader at The Anchorage Care Home and she explained, “I have worked for Humberside Independent Care Association (HICA) for over 10 years now and I feel our team is the strongest it has ever been, we’ve pulled together more than ever to support our vulnerable residents. We continue to come to work every day because we know our residents need us and that makes me proud to be part of the HICA family.”
Kerry Bryam is a personal carer at The Anchorage and she added,
“We are remaining positive during this difficult time and are all in good spirits working together as a team to ensure our vulnerable residents do not know that anything is different to their normal day to day routines, supporting them like they are our own family. The ethos of our Home is that ‘If it’s good enough for Mum’ then its good enough! We and our relatives would be happy to be looked after at The Anchorage in this positive happy home.”