Staff shines under pressure
To the Editor,
Most of us have moved at least once or twice in our lives. No matter the circumstances, I think most will agree it is a very stressful time.
Yesterday I was at Highland Wood while "moving day" unfolded around me. Circumstances called for the residents to be moved out of Highland Wood until the proper repairs/replacement can be made to the roof. As you can imagine, there was a lot of activity and noise as preparations were made and carried out to ensure the safe transportation of all residents.
I would like to share what I witnessed during those few hours. The residents I spoke to were, of course, unsettled and worried about their imminent move to parts unknown. They fretted about some of their personal belongings, medical equipment and even their health card possibly being left behind. They were concerned that their family or friends would not know that they were being moved. They worried about when they might return to their home at Highland Wood.
In the midst of the organized chaos, I also witnessed some of the finest professional medical care I have ever seen. I was moved to hear and to watch as staff responded to the residents with respect, compassion, gentleness, reassurance, and always a smile. They calmed them and comforted them and reassured them they would return to Highland Wood as quickly as possible. They even made sure everyone had a good nourishing lunch before they were moved. It seemed nobody was too busy to respond to even the smallest request or concern.
I cannot say enough about Dr. Tina Stephenson, the nurses, the managers, the kitchen workers and servers, the maintenance guys, all the staff from other areas of the hospital who pitched in to help pack up the residents’ belongings, the people in charge of transporting the residents to their new temporary home, and everyone else who assisted in any way in this daunting task. This all took place under the watchful eye of CEO and President, Carolyn Plummer. I am guessing this was one of her most stress filled weeks on the job but she and her truly amazing team handled this situation just beautifully, never deviating from providing the finest care possible to those entrusted to their care, despite the circumstances. I would be remiss not to mention how emotional this event was for staff. Many of them have cared for these residents over a long period of time and they have become like family.