Reflecting on 2020, I remain eternally grateful for the generous support of our donors and volunteers enabling us to care for nearly 8,000 patients and clients this year. I am also incredibly honored to work with such a dedicated team caring for the most vulnerable in our community. The compassionate staff members of VNA are working tirelessly amidst this pandemic crisis to care for and protect those we serve. As we enter a new surge in the COVID-19 pandemic, I look back over the past nine months and all that we have already learned, overcome and how much we have changed. We have much to be proud of as an organization. Without a doubt, this will be one of the most challenging obstacles we will ever face as we care for seniors in North Texas.
Continuing to Provide Care:
Even in the face of these many challenges, the Visiting Nurse Association of Texas (VNA) has, above all else, continued to provide hot meals to seniors and compassionate, comprehensive hospice and palliative care. You, our supporters, provide a lifeline and light to our patients, clients, and staff during this unsettling time.
Here at VNA, our hearts go out to all who have been sick and have lost loved ones to COVID-19. It is now more critically important than ever to take all precautions to protect your health. In this country, 1 person dies every 30 seconds of COVID-19. Importantly, studies are showing long-term damage to the heart in people who have had mild cases of COVID-19. As we approach holiday celebrations, I encourage you to stand firm in your vigilance in safety practices including wearing masks, practicing social distancing, using proper hand hygiene, and avoiding large gatherings. Please know we are doing our part to protect and care for those we serve. Following is an update about our programs:
In hospice and palliative, we continue to screen all patients and household members prior to any visits, all employees continue to self-screen daily using the signature log, and we are currently wearing N95s or equivalent for all patient visits. Clinical staff are once again making visits where able and providing interdisciplinary care to meet patients’ needs. Our music therapy department has been providing companionship, therapy and support to both patients and staff and are coming up with new creative ways to provide support daily; we also have two music therapy interns, so there is a team of four providing this much-needed support!
Meals on Wheels Update:
We continue to deliver food and friendship two days per week, Tuesdays and Thursdays, with a total of five meals provided every week to each senior. Volunteers are calling clients Monday, Wednesday and Friday to provide socialization and safety checks. The holiday delivery will look a bit different this year but will still be joy-filled for both volunteers and recipients. Seniors will still receive a festive, holiday gift bag filled with individually wrapped toiletry essentials and a greeting card. A traditional Christmas dinner will be delivered on Christmas Eve and we are hopeful to have many volunteers engaged in this effort. VNA nurses have administered 470 flu vaccines and plan on more than a 100 more in December. This important collaboration among programs is a wonderful expression of our mission to help seniors age with dignity in their homes.
COVID-19 Vaccine Resources:
For more information and questions, please contact DCHS directly.
Our executive, legal, finance, IT, and foundation teams are settling into our new headquarters at 1420 W. Mockingbird. We look forward to welcoming everyone to our new office soon. In the meantime, we continue to require limited administrative time in ALL offices and will continue this practice as long as necessary.
We look forward to “seeing” you all when the time is right. Thank you again for all you do for VNA and our community. We wish you and your family a happy and healthy holiday season.