I’m Tired.

Monday. Crap Day. The “I just want to lay in bed and do f*ck all day”. But I’m working – as most of you are as well because that’s what we do. We work. Some of us in illegal business but most of us on the other end of the spectrum, doing work in exchange for monetary benefits. I’m not in LTC today, I’m in Cambridge working with OPSWA. It’s fairly busy today & the heat out side doesn’t help matters.

I just feel the need to rant. Yesterday was a complete & total sh!t show at work and it’s still bugging me today. Sometimes I am just absolutely appalled with the events I see & the fact that nothing seems to be done about it irks me even more. I write about this because, well, A) this is my blog & B) most of you PSWS reading this can probably relate.

Not only was I exhausted already (my own fault for staying up late) but yesterday consisted of orienting a fairly new PSW to the floor and dealing with meals that consisted of NO COOK in which to prepare them. Uhm, hello? Apparently the cook called in sick the night before and they couldn’t get a replacement.

Breakfast normally consists of the option between cold cereals & oatmeal. Well, yesterday was just cold cereal so if you didn’t eat that OR were on a puree diet, you didn’t eat. Lunch then consisted of ham sandwiches, chicken soup & salad. Excellent options, considering that on every other day they get a choice between TWO HOT meals. I have a resident that doesn’t eat pork & 5 residents on a puree diet. I don’t know who was down there preparing all this but thankfully they thought to make mash potatoes and enough puree meals to feed those who needed them. Needless to say we had A LOT of residents and family members who were non to pleased.

This is their HOME. These people live here. It’s not a hotel, it’s not a restaurant.They are paying some absurd amount of money on a monthly basis to live and EAT here and this is what happens? WHY was there no part-time cook to stand in? WHY didn’t the dietary supervisor come in and take charge when notified of the situation? This shouldn’t be labelled a “one off” because this shouldn’t happen to begin with!

I advised – after profusely apologizing for an error I didn’t make – my residents and their families to make noise in order to ensure that something like that DOESN’T happen again.

And how was your day?

First Aid 101

I recall taking a First Aid & CPR course only twice prior to the one I took on June 22nd & 23rd of this year. The first was in grade 7 and seeing as that was well over 15 years ago (Wow, I feel old!) I couldn’t tell you what I learned or who it was taught by. Thankfully I never had to use any of the skills they attempted to teach me. The second time was when I was in school taking my PSW course – 5 some odd years ago. Between that time and now I only had to do the heimlich maneuver once. That was more than enough for me. I also realized that between that time and now my certification had expired. In Fact, it expired after 3 years.

Oops.

SO, I decided to be the responsible PSW that I am and sign myself up for First Aid & CPR through St. Johns Ambulance. A 2 day course which I took part in with 20 or so other individuals, all of us clearly there for the same reason: WORK.
If not for work, I doubt any of us would be there. It’s 2 days – sometimes without pay – and depending on your instructor you may find yourself dozing off and not learning anything. That aside, it’s also A LOT of information to digest in 2 full 8 hour days!

The first thing we we learned before anything else was safety and personal protection regarding ourselves, the  first aiders. A lot of people when in public hope NEVER to have to use the skills they have, stemming mainly from fear and any repercussions that could occur after. First and foremost we are to introduce ourselves & ask the individual in distress if they want our help. Silly, right? Some people decline. Protecting us from any backlash is the Good Samaritan Act (Anyone else thinking of SEINFELD?!) which states: a person who voluntarily and without reasonable expectation of compensation or reward provides the services described in that subsection is not liable for damages that result from the person’s negligence in acting or failing to act while providing the services, unless it is established that the damages were caused by the gross negligence of the person (Wikipedia).

Other than basic CPR, which after continually giving 2 breaths & 30 chest compressions intermittently until our instructor stopped us, we learned a variety of other skills that could potentially come in handy. Now the likely hood of having to give first aid for Poison Ivy where I work in LTC is rare, it’s still  a good skill to have. I have a cottage. I’ve been known to frolic in the bushes.

Not only are these skills that you can apply in your work environment, but in your personal life as well.
Hopefully, we’ll never need to.