A Message From Focused Care's Founder

Mark McKenzie, CEO

Staying the Course

Staying the Course. That’s a phrase that sparks some debate as to its origin. Some think it’s a nautical reference and others relate it to horses on a track. The meaning of the phrase when we hear it though – means keep on keeping on.  Don’t falter. Don’t let the headwinds steer you off course. Stay on track. Reach your goal.

With respect to our personal lives and the pandemic, I wouldn’t be surprised if most of us feel like we’re done with the whole thing.  Here we are in the midst of yet another surge of COVID cases and we haven’t recovered from the previous onslaught. We all want our lives to be lifted from the pressure and constant awareness of this virus.  Perhaps when we’re at home reading a book, watching sports or cooking dinner – we momentarily forget about this insidious virus and the regularity of life brings us some peace.

Then we turn on the news or we walk outside.  Or in our case, we go to work.

Maybe you’re done feeling heroic and you just want to sleep and feel safe.  Maybe you could use some silence and sun on your face. Maybe, if you are a skilled nursing care provider, you’d like to care for your patients without the threat of this virus either breaking through a vaccination or infecting an unprotected person. For us in this profession, on this mission, on this course – this mindset is perfectly understandable.

But more is expected of us. We would not abandon our children or dear family members or friends as a result of fatigue and frustration with this virus. We cannot leave the caring for our vulnerable residents up to others less qualified or committed.

We must stay the course. We must, as we have continued to do, put the well-being of others – those we care for – in the forefront of our minds and intentions every time we walk through the door of our skilled nursing community. Just as they tell us on a plane in the event of an emergency to put the oxygen mask over our own face first before helping others – we must protect ourselves so we can continue to protect those in our care.

There are scenes in the Christmas movie It’s a Wonderful Life where the angel Clarence shows George Bailey how the lives of everyone he cares about would have been impacted if his imprint hadn’t existed. This after in desperation, George declares everyone would have been better off if he’d never been born.

We don’t often consider how many lives we touch a day and over time. Ours is not a job.  It’s a mission. The well-being of those we care for is directly impacted by our own well-being. We must embrace this as truth.

Mark McKenzie

Founder and CEO