Director of Continued Care: “Everyone working in health and social care is doing amazing things for each other”
In an exclusive article for The Parliamentary Review, director of Continued Care, Samantha Harrison discusses self-isolation, pressures felt by social care and a newfound sense of community during the pandemic.
Like all those working in health and social care, we’ve been extremely busy over the last few weeks. We’ve been taking steps to keep our service users and staff members safe, while still trying to look after the needs of our service users, many of whom have complex health conditions.
Our service users tend to be older and vulnerable, and are therefore self-isolating or their relatives are self-isolating. So, as well as providing our usual services, we’ve been working hard to deliver essential items to them. This is all with a reduced workforce because we have staff who are self-isolating either themselves or with a family member.
All our staff have been amazing. Despite the pressures that they themselves are under, our carers have been on the front line risking their own health to continue working. Not only that, but they are going out of their way to offer additional care and support to our clients, such as picking up essential items in between visits, contacting all our service users by telephone as many feel lonely.
One of the things that has been really noticeable is how supportive people in our wider community have been. We’ve had lots of offers of help, from picking up essentials to deliveries and picking people up from hospital.
Every day brings different questions and requires different management responses. We’ve had to learn to work differently. We have been sending out as much information as possible to our service users and our carers because education and communication is vital at the moment.
Everyone working in health and social care is doing amazing things for each other and putting other people’s needs before their own. We’re grateful to all the frontline workers, paramedics, hospital staff and community staff, as well as the teachers who provide vital support to enable parents to continue working in health and social care.