by Kelly Chiavaro…
My mom has been a true hero throughout this pandemic. From taking care of me while I was going through the Coronavirus and being in and out of the hospital, to going to work everyday at a residence for the elderly to make sure they were safe and healthy, she is everything I want to be.
My mom’s initial role at the residence was to keep the patients entertained by organizing bingos, planning manicure days and field trips like going to the beach. Due to this pandemic, she has taken on roles such as taking care of patients with the Coronavirus, helping the morgue get the bodies of those who passed and making sure those who are not infected stay healthy. From working regular 8 hour days, my mom now arrives at work around 7am and returns home at 10:30 pm exhausted, mentally drained and worried about the patients she has spent years with.
During our late night discussions on how her day went, I quickly understood that they did not have the proper equipment to keep them healthy; extra large masks, extra large gloves, no glasses, and a majority of them felt let down by their superiors. Although the lack of proper equipment was putting her health at risk, she left the house every morning looking forward to helping as much as she could and making sure everyone got the care they deserved.
A few days ago my mom came home extremely upset because one of the women at the hospital had a high fever, was shivering and no one was helping her out. My mom therefore took it upon herself to help this woman get in her pajamas, got her a heated blanket, slippers and helped her get back in bed.
Today, my mom has tested positive for the Coronavirus and when asked if she regrets voluntarily going to work and having to use equipment that wasn’t safe, her response is; not at all. My mother would put her health at risk any day to make sure the patients at her residence are as comfortable as possible and get the care that they need.
Many employees have refused to come into work, leaving the residence severely understaffed and causing the employees who do show up to be exhausted and working 12+ hours a day, 7 days a week. Even with the Coronavirus my mom continues to call the families of every single patient to keep them updated as no one else has been doing it. She is a true hero!