"Day of Caring" hosted by Pa. Health Care Association

“Day of Caring” hosted by Pa. Health Care Association

WILKES-BARRE — They held a press conference outside, but the real action was inside. Well, more accurately, the virtual reality action.

“Look at the butterflies!”

“Where are the elephants?” “You have to look around to find them.”

“You can’t go fishing, Dorothy!”

At a media event on Thursday, some residents of the Allied Services Meade Street Skilled Nursing and Personal Care Campus were able to don virtual reality goggles and experience scenes like elephants wandering through grassy savannah, an explosion rapid fireworks across a nocturnal horizon, and the aforementioned butterflies and fish. They acted like they were really there, pointing, turning their heads and craning their necks, smiles and even a few laughs adorning their still visible mouths.

The virtual bargain was demonstrated after a series of healthcare supporters and local politicians held a press conference under the roof of a large gazebo outside the facility, courtesy of the event Pennsylvania Health Care Association’s annual Day of Caring. The Association bills itself as the “state’s premier advocacy association, representing Pennsylvania’s most vulnerable residents and their caregivers.”

The aim was to shine a light on careers in long-term care and show appreciation for frontline workers, especially in the wake of the issues created during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Allied Services touted investments made in the senior care campus to benefit residents, while PHCA President and CEO Zach Shamberg spoke about the importance of maintaining quality staff for seniors. vulnerable older people.

“This small gesture could not express the level of gratitude and appreciation we all have for the men and women on the front lines of the pandemic, and the care they provide every day,” Shamberg said in a statement. press accompanying the event. “We are here today to remind our frontline caregivers that while they no longer hear ‘health heroes’ everywhere they go, what they have been doing throughout the pandemic is everything. simply heroic.

Once inside, visitors gathered around residents interacting with staff before enjoying distant views through high-tech headsets. Then they served a catered lunch – although at least one woman wanted to stay in the immersive world of virtual reality.

“Do you want to come back to the dining room for lunch?” Staff member Nicole Sworen asked Dorothy Krugel.

“Just give me five more minutes,” the 60-year-old said with a smile behind the glasses.

Contact Mark Guydish at 570-991-6112 or on Twitter @TLMarkGuydish

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