The Places for People community of staff and individuals receiving services has embraced social distancing as a response to the COVID-19 outbreak, but there are still a few hundred instances when face-to-face appointments are unavoidable.
“There’s so little reticence to step out there in the community and do what they need to do. It’s inspiring,” said Places for People Director of Nursing Georgiann Anderson.
PFP’s nurses perform nearly 200 injections of long-term medications a month for people living with severe mental illness.
With concerns about community-wide transmission of COVID-19, Anderson and the Places for People management team are focused on finding more PPEs (Personal Protective Equipment) for the organization’s nurses and front-line staff.
“The management staff has worked tirelessly to get us PPE, but that has been very, very difficult. The supplies are just not there,” Anderson said.
The greatest needs right now include hand sanitizer, N95 respirator masks, disposable scrubs, goggles that wraparound the face, vinyl gloves, and non-contact thermometers. Many of these items are unavailable or severely back-ordered.
“Keeping them as safe as possible is our main goal,” Anderson said.
We’re a rehabilitation facility. We assist people in moving towards more independence – getting better. Right now, even though that is the goal of the agency, we are trying to assist people in keeping stable so their illness does not progress. Not anxious where they’re going to get something to eat. We’re going to make sure they get their injections when they need to. That we’re able to, at least by phone, talk to them about how they’re doing, dealing with isolation, social distancing.Georgiann Anderson, Director of Nursing
Even with some of these critical items being in short supply, Anderson said PFP’s staff has performed admirably to continue offering services.
Anderson said, “It’s just been amazing. There have been a couple of times that I’ve almost been brought to tears.”