Home health care is becoming a new front in the national fight against COVID-19 as hospitals discharge patients home and others strive to stay out of them. The World Health Organization just named 2020 the year of the Nurse and Midwife and with National Nurses week right upon us, Pemi-Baker would like to say thank you to all of our Nurses and Licensed Nurse Assistants who go above and beyond, day in and day out.
Home care nurses, therapists, and aides — who normally help an estimated 12 million Americans with everything from bathing to IV medications — are now taking on the difficult and potentially dangerous task of caring for coronavirus patients. While Americans are being told to keep to themselves, home health providers and their clients still largely have to engage in person, often in close proximity. Many agencies are ramping up phone or video visits but these are typically not covered by insurance and even the smartest phone can’t listen to someone’s lungs or get them to the bathroom.
The crisis is testing the industry, but it’s also a moment of pride for workers who have often felt under-recognized. “We have taken the Covid 19 pandemic as an opportunity,” said Danielle Paquette-Horne, PBCH Home Health, Palliative and Hospice Care Director. “We’re getting a chance to establish what can be done different by modifying our daily operations and to show the community that they can continue to count on us to serve them and their family during this pandemic,” Paquette-Horne said.
Coronavirus care at home has expanded rapidly in the last few weeks. Some agencies in most states are now taking COVID-19 patients referred after hospitalization or nursing home care or as an alternative to them, and Pemi-Baker Community Health is rising to the challenge.
Pemi-Baker Community Health’s COVID-19 taskforce meets three times a week to assure Pemi-Baker is up to date with CDC guidelines and like their colleagues in hospitals and nursing homes, PBCH’s home care workers have faced a scarcity of protective equipment.
“We are very grateful to the EVERSOURCE Foundation for their recent grant to help us buy more protective supplies for our nurses, LNAs and patients,” said Chandra Engelbert, Pemi-Baker Community Health, CEO. “To have a community partner we can rely on when our non-profit faces these challenges, is crucial and priceless,” said Engelbert, “Countless Pemi-Baker friends have also sewn cloth face masks for our staff and patients, (double prevention), and we want to thank them as well.”
To help raise funds, Pemi-Baker Community Health is holding a ‘NO-SHOW AUCTION’ throughout the month of May. With over 70 items to bid on, Raffles to invest in and Specialty Services to donate towards, they are hoping to make up for the fact that they had to cancel their largest fundraiser of the year. Please visit www.32auctions.com/PBCHMay2020 to participate.
For over 52 years, Pemi-Baker Community Health has served family, friends and neighbors in 18+ towns and they couldn’t have done it without the generosity of individuals and businesses alike. Pemi-Baker would like to thank the following businesses for sponsoring the NO-SHOW AUCTION: Dumont Construction Inc., Mid-State Health Center, Northway Bank, Speare Memorial Hospital, NEEBCO, MatrixCare by ResMed, Noyes Insurance, Service Credit Union, Insurance 24, Steve and Carole Osmer, Brian Weeks Electric, Highline Acoustics, Deb Hills Cleaning Services, Peabody & Smith Realty.
~By Anna Swanson