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  1. What about when you have resident(s) that are requiring palliative / end of life care? All nine of my residents have a dementia and are total care even if some think they are independent (usually these ones are the hardest). Our residents are coming into the nursing homes more frail, further into their disease, or end of life. If you add this onto your day it gets even better. In our home we are very proud of our toilet routines. Every resident is placed on a routine allowing them to “empty” out normally on each shift (some are toileted several times a shift). This is for all residents, either wheelchair bound or not. So we bring out the lifts. This requires two staff members, so we have to find someone to help you with this. Yes it takes a staff member away from their nine residents.
    We entertain residents, help them to “find their mom” many times over, we get them out of others rooms before fights break out, we put back what they have taken from other rooms, we deal with family members that do not understand that their mom or dad is not the only person that we look after. We do help them to understand that we will look after their love one and that we will make sure they are well cared for.
    We are trained to do restorative care with our residents. Helping them to be as independent as possible.
    We attend in services or go on our own time to extra classes/courses helping us to better serve our residents.
    We volunteer to be on committees. We attend care conferences. When other psw’s have trouble, we are there to help them with their workload.
    We not only care for our residents, we care for the families and our co-workers.
    We advocate for our residents when they have no one to speak for them.
    We build strong trusting relationships with our residents.
    We create a home-like environment for our residents.
    We mentor new psw’s. We have a high standard of care and high expectations.
    Our role seems to overlap the role of our registered staff. If we all agree to work along side each other with respect, compassion, and commitment, we have the makings of a wonderful shift.
    We also try to do self care at the end of the day so we may come back and do it all over again.
    Yes this job is physically, and mentally exhausting, but rewarding.
    Our residents are family-like to us. I really can not think of another job I would rather do. I just hope my body will hold up.

    • Thanks for sharing your experience Jackie.
      PSW’s truly are making a huge difference. They are the backbone of our healthcare system. Without them, I believe the healthcare system will become dysfunctional.
      And you are absolutely right about working together. Working as a team when dealing with a number of residents can make your life much easier. It makes working as a PSW so much fun.

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