I’m sharing this story on behalf of Janet Connelly. Janet worked for Northern Health for 28 years in the Supply Chain Department before retiring in 2015. Since retiring, she’s returned to work casually with the Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) to assist with projects such as the Canada Winter Games, wildfire responses, and now, the COVID-19 response management of personal protective equipment. She understands the extra effort required to succeed during these situations, and feels it’s important for that hard work to be recognized. She recently sent in this note to express her thanks for the care her elderly mother receives at Gateway Lodge.
Janet and her mom's story
I want to congratulate Northern Health, and specifically Gateway Lodge in Prince George, on the incredible and exceptional care being provided by the staff and management to the residents.
At a time when we hear so much negative press about levels of care, I want to take the time to give my heartfelt gratitude for the efforts being made to protect our at-risk family.
My Mom, Charlotte Hellyer, lives on the third floor of the assisted living wing. I admit that I’ve struggled with the decision to leave Mom in care in light of the number of COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care homes.* But, I realize I just cannot manage her care at home.
I speak with Mom at least twice a day. During every conversation, Mom shares stories of compassion, inclusion, security, special attention, and the staff members going above and beyond for her.
Housekeepers water her plants; care aides do her laundry, nurses set her hair and help her to the window for our parking lot visits, and social workers take a moment to listen. The recreation staff and physiotherapy teams provide activities to keep the residents both entertained and engaged. Nurses respond to my calls when we bring parcels and deliver them immediately while we visit from the window. The list goes on and on.
Mom is always positive and tells me about the safety procedures that are practiced everyday. In short, she feels safe and fortunate to be where she is.
*Editor’s note: as of the date this story was published there have not been any outbreaks in any of Northern Health's long-term care facilities.