Caring for COVID Patients in Need
Claude*, a previously healthy young father, spent nearly 2 months in the hospital with COVID-19, including 20 days critically ill on a ventilator and in kidney failure. One doctor after another told his wife, Ruth, “Your husband is a very, very, very sick man.”
But Ruth never gave up hope, imploring doctors to do all they could. “I have two little kids who need their father,” she said. “I wasn’t ready to bury my husband.” Thanks to the doctors and the VNS Health clinicians who visited him at home, she says, Claude is back to his active life with his family, playing with the kids and getting out for short car rides.
An additional worry during that harrowing time was that Claude, a school bus driver who lost his job when the schools closed, would lose his health insurance. VNS Health worked together with the hospital to help his wife transfer to Medicaid to ensure that high-quality care continued uninterrupted.
One lingering symptom of the illness was a debilitating blood clot in Claude’s left arm. VNS Health occupational therapist Malky S. worked with him two to three times a week to regain strength and range of motion so he could resume daily activities like dressing on his own. “It’s really rewarding to be there for him during this hard time to help him regain his independence,” Malky said. “He’s come so far already.”
Ruth is grateful for Malky’s motivation. “Whenever he makes any improvement, Malky is very good about encouraging him, reminding him how much better he’s getting every day,” Ruth says.
*Patient and family names have been changed to protect privacy.