The past several months have been a challenging time for everyone amidst the unexpected COVID-19 pandemic. But one thing that has remained consistent is the never-ending hard work and efforts of our SNF frontline workers who have continued to care for long-term residents, day in and day out, even during unimaginable circumstances.
Established by the American Health Association (AHCA) in the 1960s, this year, National Skilled Nursing Care Week (NSNCW) is observed from May 9 – 15. Here, at Net Health, we want to show our gratitude to SNF staff members everywhere, while also taking the opportunity to hear a little bit about their own thoughts and stories.
Net Health Employee Showing Her Support for #SNFStrong
Making a Difference in The Lives of Others
Many people choose to become a part of the SNF industry because of their compassion for others and deep desire to help the frail and vulnerable when they need it the most. For Melissa Green, Partner & CCO of Trio Healthcare in Sandy Springs, GA, she is no exception.
When we spoke to Melissa and asked her why she chose this profession, she said, “I feel it is a calling. There’s a lot of needs that we fulfill. It is wonderful to know that I have abilities to make decisions that affect the quality of care in the buildings that I oversee.”
Providing high-quality, all-around care to residents also makes her think about how she would want her loved ones to be supported. “I also want to ensure that each resident has a quality of life that lives up to expectations that I would want my family member to have,” she added.
Tammy Eichner, Director of Nursing for Galax Health and Rehab (Trio Healthcare), echoed these sentiments and reflected on the rewarding benefits that can come with working in a long-term care facility.
“Nobody goes into this profession not knowing that it is going to be physically, mentally and emotionally exhausting, but the rewards are so much more than what you put into it,” she said. “It’s one thing to take care of a patient, but when you turn into that person that can really do holistic care, and take care of their mind, their body, their spirit, their family – it changes you.”
“We’re in This Together”
With all the unknowns that have taken place in the last year, it’s no surprise that the theme for NSNCW 2021 is “Together Through the Seasons.” It’s a message that rings true to people everywhere, and it serves as a reminder that, while staff members and residents often find themselves weathering everyday storms, they can find ways to heal together as well.
Those in the SNF industry also hope to alleviate any concerns long-term care patients and their families may have during the pandemic, particularly by providing the reassurance that health and safety continues to be the number one priority for all.
Eric Gillis, VP, Portfolio Management of CareTrust REIT in California, explained that strict measures continue to be in place to ensure that COVID transmission rates are low.
“What you don’t hear [on the news] are the facilities that are able to keep COVID out of their buildings,” he said. “And if they have one or two COVID patients in their building, they have infection control protocol that keeps it at bay.”
Net Health Employee #SNFStrong All The Way
Supporting SNFs Across the U.S.
Scott Taylor, CEO of SRX, hopes to share the message that we need to be a pillar of support for skilled nursing facilities and their “incredible caregivers.”
“These are our parents, our aunts, our uncles, our friends – this industry is taking care of them when often we can’t,” he said. “We need to do everything to support them.”
While we don’t know what other COVID-19 related changes are ahead in the following months or how that may affect skilled nursing care centers, one thing is for sure: SNF staff members are right by our side through it all. It’s thanks to these essential, hard-working individuals that our communities can come closer together, and residents can get one step closer to recovery.
As Dr. Michele Belantoni, Clinical Director of Geriatric Medicine at John Hopkins Bayview Medical Center, noted, “When our older adults are very challenged by acute illness, and then have the opportunity to recover, that’s where our skilled nursing facilities shine.”
#SNFSTRONG Support From Our Furry Friends!