“I have been a Private HomeCare carer for 6 years. This year I have worked in both a retirement home as well as family homes, to assist clients diagnosed with Covid.”
“If I don’t do it, who will do it ?” is just one of Cathy Kavanagh’s reasons for continuing to work at this time. This is Cathy’s story.
“At the start of Covid, a lot of staff in residential homes became sick and others had to isolate so they turned to Private HomeCare to help out. That is how I ended up working in a retirement home with 23 older people, of whom 6 were Covid positive.
“The office have been fantastic. First Anne explains everything in detail to me about a new client. There is no pressure to work with Covid if I don’t want to.
When I arrive at the retirement home, I put scrubs on, then wear a blue hospital gown, with gloves upto my forearm. I change my shoes. I also wear an apron, a mask and a visor. Each time, I go into a different person’s room, I bin and replace my PPE clothing and follow handwashing training. This happens multiple times during each shift. The residents are in rooms spread over two floors. Each has an alarm and I wear a pendant around my neck that alerts me when an alarm is raised.
When I finish work, I change my clothing again. I spray my shoes and leave them in the boot of my car, where I also keep hand sanitisers. My partner leaves Zoflora and Dettol at our front door. I spray my shoes, strip off and shower, and then wash all my clothing.
Our office gives me full PPE for every client as I need them. I also follow the guidelines that they give us and I have attended our latest training course “Infection Prevention and Control – Covid 19”. Even though I have a lot of experience in caring, it’s a good course as you get a refresher on how to use PPE properly, and lots of hints and tips. My daughter has asthma so think of your family.
It is always at the back of our minds if our clients get covid, “is it my fault ?” One of my clients got Covid in hospital. My first thought was it me ? Although I hadn’t been with them for 3 weeks.
I follow all the office guidelines. We are doing everything we can to keep our clients safe. I know it is scary for them as well as they are vulnerable. We take every precaution we possibly can to make sure we can’t bring it in.”