Oi. It’s that time of year again, where the flu is abundant and everyone you know is sniffling, sneezing, coughing, or all 3. And if they’ aren’t YET, chances are they will be. The last time I was sick was just after Thanksgiving – great timing – so I’m hoping I won’t get sick again for a while. But hey, who are we kidding. It’s me, and I work with the elderly and already sick. Neo Citran & NyQuil are some of my best friends. However, even though I find it silly to try to prevent the inevitable, I got my flu shot today. Even if I didn’t want my flu shot, I haven’t a choice as it’s a job requirement. Luckily I work with nurses so I just get it when it’s available at work which saves me having to go out of my way elsewhere.
You know what else is fabulous about this time of year? ISOLATION! Alright, let me explain.
If a resident is severely sick with the flu or cold, they are isolated to their rooms as a way to prevent other people from catching it. Worse case scenario is that EVERYONE is sick and bed ridden – oh, it happens – and that means tray service to all the rooms. Disposable trays, utensils, plates, robes, gloves, masks – EVERYTHING. It is a lot easier to monitor people ans help people when they are all in the same room. Some residents cannot be left a lone to eat as they need help or at risk for choking. So figure it out: 3 PSW’s – at MOST, 1 in the dining room and the rest of us running from room to room to help those that are sick. Pain in the ass? Absolutely. Do I complain when I’m at work? NO. Seriously. I knew this going in, so I just roll with it. Today I had 2 residents on isolation. One of which is capable of eating on their own, so I checked up on them every couple of minutes to see how they were making out. My other resident is blind therefore needs my help. This doesn’t happen often, but it happens.
We’ve also been lucky enough to have some extra help the last couple of weeks and today was their last day. 2 students from …. damn, I forget which school, have been working with us as a part of their course. I LOVE students. First of all, I know what it’s like as I’ve been there before and secondly, extra help! 2 more pairs of hands! It’s very exciting and helps us out tremendously. Today they brough us some fancy noodle dish and a cake from their native Philippines as a thank you to us for helping and teaching them. I thought that was such a lovely gesture as no one was expecting it at all.
Just some more reasons as to why my job is AWESOME.