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Long-term Care nurses giving more now then ever

Dennis Galvez is a Registered Practical Nurse and Kensington Gardens' Behavioural Support Lead

The nursing team at Kensington Gardens treats the 350 residents like an extension of their families – for many, that bond is special and the best part of their work.

Long-term care nurses weave together the medical and psychological needs of residents. They get to know each resident, their personalities, their hobbies and interests, and their medical needs. This relationship building helps our teams understand what someone’s normal looks like, and they can respond if they see any changes in behaviour. It is a “gut feeling” that nurses develop. They just know when something is wrong because they know our residents.

But when COVID-19 hit, keeping this commitment has meant making some personal sacrifices.

Beverly Parrocha, a Registered Nurse, has worked at Kensington for 14 years. She is a mother with two kids, and because of working on the front line through this pandemic, she has to self-isolate to protect her family.

“My children sometimes cry because they don’t want me to leave the house. But all I can do is continue to assure them that everything will be okay and that I’m doing okay. It’s definitely taken a toll on me because I enjoy spending time with them, but just to be safe, I seclude myself,” says Beverly.  

Elaine Malia is a Registered Nurse at Kensington Gardens.

Needless to say, things are different in the long-term care home, too.

Before the pandemic, family members were on floors nearly every day, helping out with feeding and checking in on their loved ones. Without this thriving community support, our teams have had to step in to make sure families are still connecting digitally and that residents do not feel alone.

“Visitation has played an important role in helping residents with social isolation. The presence of family is a big thing for residents, and not having them here is difficult for them. The virtual communication programs Kensington implemented help a lot. We also take residents to the balcony so that they can see their families when they visit from the road,” explains Beverly.

Our care teams are on the front line every day, supporting each other, our residents, and their families. For many of them, this is more than just a job. They do this because they take pride in helping our community and in being there for our residents.

“I live by empathy and honesty. I believe that everyone deserves the best care, and it’s important to treat others how you’d like to be treated,” adds Jessy John, Registered Nurse.

Kensington Health is proud to celebrate the World Health Organization's 2020 Year of the Nurse. We are grateful for the invaluable contributions of the nurses at Kensington.

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Posted in Featured, Featured Long-term Care, Long-term Care on May 20, 2020