This week’s Sprott Shaw Hero, Laura Ross, is a very passionate healthcare worker who cares about others and has the heart and compassion to do so. Ever since she was a housekeeper at a local long-term care facility in Kamloops, Laura knew that she wanted to take a Health Care Assistant program to be able to give back to the community in a way that truly matters in this world.
On August 10th, 2020, Laura started her first day of orientation at Ridgeview Lodge and she has been there every day ever since. While she was still a student at Sprott Shaw, Laura actually completed her first four weeks of clinical placement at Ridgeview Lodge, so she was fortunate enough to be hired before graduation. Coincidentally, Laura’s cousins, Adeline Tremblay and Kayla Tremblay, who were also graduates of Sprott Shaw, work with her at Ridgeview Lodge. Together, they all do their part to take care of the residents at the senior care home. As a worker in the healthcare field, providing seniors with a high quality of life is something she considers to be important.
An Average Day as a Health Care Assistant at a Long-Term Care Facility
As a Health Care Assistant, an average workday consists of taking care of and advocating for the residents. In her job, Laura looks not only after their health, but also specifically, what their personal wants and needs are so she can relay them back to their family members. Whether it’s a compression stocking or simply a box of chocolates, she finds joy in helping the residents live their best lives
In Laura’s job as a care aide, she helps the residents with all of their activities of daily living (ADLs) including laundry, grooming, feeding, bathing, and more. Her goal in her job is to provide the residents with the best quality of life that she can. In addition to these responsibilities, she also needs to be diligent and pay attention to any sort of changes in their behaviour or body, as they may potentially lead to or be a health problem. She also offers the residents warmth and compassion as they are currently unable to see their family members due to the restrictions caused by COVID-19. To show them compassion, she will hold their hands and comfort them in times of need.
Laura’s favourite part of the job is when she personally makes the residents smile or laugh – their reactions make her heart feel so whole. To add some fun to the mix, some of the residents like to also sing and dance so they have fun together and build rapport with each other. When her residents are happy, she is happy – she is there for them through the tears, frustration, and laughter.
Since working as a Health Care Assistant, she 100% recommends others to pursue the same career path. As she says, “I recommend [everyone] to be an HCA because it is a rewarding career. And I’m not talking about financially. I’m talking about how good it makes you truly feel every day knowing you are taking care of someone who has lived their whole lives taking care of others. Now, it’s their turn to be taken care of. And there’s also room for advancement to become an LPN or RN.”
Thank you, Laura, for being a vibrant burst of energy for the residents that you work with every day – they are truly lucky to have you as their care aide.