Hundred people volunteer to work at coronavirus-hit care home

Koeru Care Center.
Koeru Care Center. Source: ERR / Olev Kenk

A hundred people have volunteered to work at a care home in Järva County which is experiencing a labor shortage after a coronavirus outbreak. The high number of volunteers is partly due to the high wage being offered.

There are currently 52 people with coronavirus in Koeru Care Home and 21 members of staff have also tested positive. The center is now offering medical staff €20 an hour and slightly less for auxiliary staff.

Members of the Women's Voluntary Defense Organization (Naiskodukaitse) and health care college students are among those who have offered help, ETV's current affairs show "Aktuaalne kaamera" (AK) reported on Tuesday.

Center director Terje Teder told AK approximately 100 people have said they will come and help since she put out an appeal last week. She said a good salary is very important for motivating employees in crisis areas as well as personal protective equipment, free accommodation and food. It is hoped some of the crisis costs will be covered from the state.

AK interviewed volunteers Laura Uukkivi and Katrin Hannov who have started working at the home.

Uukkivi, a volunteer from Tallinn Health Care College, said: "I perform the duties of a nurse and a caregiver. I monitor their health, change diapers if necessary, help with feeding and drinking, I see that their overall health is in order. Today I also did rapid coronavirus tests to find new positive cases."

Hannov, a Women's Voluntary Defense Organization volunteer from Jõhvi, said she thinks it is natural to help in a crisis situation. "By helping others, you are also doing yourself a favor. You never know when you need help, and I've always believed this. And I know I there are like-minded people," Hannov said.

Teder said some of the staff members who tested positive are expected to return to work in the next few weeks.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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