We typically cherish and champion our doctors and nurses, as the brain and backbone of the healthcare system that strives to support our elderly. We can also appreciate and empathize with the family members who spend hours providing and organising, and often agonizing over, the best care possible for their loved ones. But what about the professional carers?
Too seldom do we acknowledge the Personal Support Workers who are proud to make it their profession to care for our beloved seniors. In reality, these hardworking men and women occupy a special, but generally unspoken, place in our health, our homes and our hearts.
So please, take a moment to consider the invaluable valor of these silent heroes.
There exists a unique affinity between PSWs and their companions. This in part comes from the physicality of the care that they provide every day. Their close bond develops from the contact that is an essential component of this relationship. PSWs put their arms around a person to help them from the bathtub or bed, into and out of a chair. They are bathing, grooming and feeding where others cannot. They are the ones who will help our elderly take that first step after an accident, and pick them up if they fall.
From this intimacy and familiarity stems a vigilance and understanding that may not otherwise exist. Our PSWs are often the first to notice when there is a change within a patient, for better or for worse. And resultantly, can bring about a switch in a care or treatment plan that proves preferable. In many respects they act as the ears and eyes and mouthpiece for our elderly, who may not be able to independently express themselves effectively.
There are many different names for our fulltime carers and the wonderful work that they do; Home Health Worker, Healthcare Aide, Homemaker. But they are united by the consistency and merit of their work. Theirs is a labor of love, and above all else they are eager, attentive and compassionate in caring for your loved ones as you would.