Coronavirus restrictions ease in Queensland's aged care homes ...


July 09


Inspired by Sir Thomas Moore I decided I would donate some money to the NHS Fund. However they wanted me to set up a Paypal account and after a half hearted attempt I decided there had to be something else I could do. Their website described how they supported various charities and I went looking for them specifically and found the London Ambulance Service Charitable Funds.

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Their website informed me “The Fund supports the staff of the London Ambulance Service and its patients across London. The Fund provides amenities and benefits to staff as a way of saying thank you for their hard work and dedication, as well as supporting operational activities such as the Volunteer Responder Group.

Perfect I thought and this was a way I could do something to help closer to where my sister and her family lived and also pay respect to Beetley Pete who had served 22 years in the London Ambulance Service.

Ambulance stories | beetleypete

Another episode of the ABC Program Fireside Chat covered the rise of cases in America.

One comforting thought given the inundation of the health care system in places like New York earlier this year.

Daily increase in case numbers were skyrocketing but hospitalisations and deaths were not following at the same rate as would be expected.

There were plenty of hospitalisations and plenty of deaths and those people should be in our thoughts.

However was the lower median age of those infected, the warmer summer months, mask wearing and social distancing  leading to less severe cases?

If the trend held true that would be a welcome respite from that worst predictions.

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A respite was on my mind.

I talked to a work colleague about how I had seen my folks and how unlikely that was to be repeated any time soon.

He had a similar story to tell of his father being allowed a visit from a nursing home recently and seeing his grand children for the first time in a while.

On the 17th of June, 2020 restrictions in nursing homes in Queensland had been restricted.

I want you to get an idea of what they had meant to the people who lived there and their loved ones.

They could have two visitors at a time and no limits on how many visits they got in a given day.

Children could visit them.

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As could hairdressers, legal advisors and therapists.

They could leave the home for exercise, family gatherings of up to 20 people with social distancing, funerals or seeing someone they know at another aged care facility.

A group could go on excursions.

These rules did not just apply to the elderly, it applied to anybody in care facilities. Young people, people with disabilities.

People like my older sister.

There were 13 cases reported in New South Wales that day. It was reported that 11 of those 13 were returned travellers in hotel quarantine. 

Yet I still thought…here we fuckin go. It’s starting and it was.

It’s weird as the days went on and we waited anxiously. No matter the news, good or bad.

Everybody I talked to seemed to agree, it’s coming.

Nobody has dodged a second wave from this thing yet and going off the Spanish Flu pandemic, there wasn’t going to be just two waves. There were going to be several.

This thing was with us and we had to be prepared for it to be with us for a long time.

So in that sense, seeing my parents, others seeing their loved ones. This was a respite for us. We were lucky to have it, some people were still waiting for such a respite, some people weren’t going to get one.

I thought about them, I thought about all the businesses and employees who would struggle to get through another slow down…I thought about a lot of people.

This respite was a privilege to cherish and something to take to heart and use as a bulwark to think of brighter days to come and the need to persevere.

-Lloyd Marken


8 thoughts on “COVID-19 DIARY – A LITTLE RESPITE

  1. I would feel so much better if I thought more of my countrymen and women understood the need to follow the rules and wear masks, practise social distancing, wash your hands and so on. And let’s not forget, there are some pretty smart minds working on how to create a vaccine.

    1. I whole-heartedly agree, John. Many colleges have had to go back to virtual teaching, because when they opened, not one of the so-called adults would wear a mask. Then they actually sounded surprised that 200 tested positive.

    2. A vaccine for this kind of disease would be unprecedented but there seems to be some progress being made. I agree that the more responsibility we can take for each other the safer we will all be. Some of us just don’t think like that.

  2. We are not a ‘Third-World country’ but far too many people walk around without using an ounce of the common sense God gave them or the education the government gave them!

  3. Thanks for the mention, and the donation. The fund used to be used to provide us with things that were not in the NHS budget. For example, we applied to the fund to buy a microwave, so we could heat up meals quicker. When the TV broke down, they gave us a percentage of the cost to buy another one, and we had a collection from staff for the rest. I haven’t been in the Ambulance Service since 2001, but I am sure they still put the money to good use.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    1. I’m so glad you got to read this article, I am sure they will put the money to good use too. I’m not sure how I feel about the fact that such a fund exists but it feels good to have some ability to carry out a gesture however small. Thank you for your service to the people of London over the years. Thank you for the insight too about the microwave too. Money well spent for shift workers.

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