Life changed in an instant for Kathy Pollack in 2002 when she was diagnosed with a brain tumor. But it was the two subsequent strokes caused by her cancer treatment that really altered the course of her life. The strokes left this once-active woman with a traumatic brain injury (TBI) and paralysis. As a result of her TBI, Kathy had many extended stays in hospitals, rehab facilities, and a nursing home. Her family, particularly her dedicated husband, Mike, wanted to bring Kathy home, where she belonged. With the help of BAYADA, Kathy eventually returned home to the upstairs apartment above Mike’s hardware store in Atco, NJ.
At first, Kathy required in-home clinical care visits from therapists, nurses, and a physician. Although she has some improvement, Kathy is still wheelchair-bound, needing around-the-clock care. Working as a team with Mike, her home health aides, who have been with the Pollocks for several years, help her with activities of daily living including assistance with personal care such as bathing, getting dressed, and eating. They also provide assistance with mobility and help with exercises as part of her continued therapy.
As with all BAYADA clients, Kathy’s care is overseen by an RN clinical manager who manages the team and ensures that Kathy’s care is always high quality and meeting her needs. Kathy’s two home health aides, Lucy and Alma, work with Kathy six days a week. They have TBI-specific expertise and are so in-tune with Kathy’s condition that they can pick up on any little change and address it quickly before it escalates into a problem. They are focused on prevention and early identification of a serious secondary condition, which can mean the difference between staying healthy at home or having a costly hospitalization.
Lucy and Alma provide care the way that any family would want—with compassion, excellence, and reliability. They love what they do and have developed a strong, caring relationship with Kathy. Several years ago, Lucy even moved her family right across the street from the Pollock’s home to ensure 100% reliability, so bad weather or heavy traffic would never prevent her from being there for Kathy. To Lucy and Alma, keeping Kathy safe at home with Mike is more than a career—it’s a calling.
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