JAA would not have gotten through these past ten months without the expertise, dedication, and positive attitude of our infection control practitioner, Joyelle Bateman, who is among the 2020 Excellence in Nursing Honorees sponsored by Pittsburgh Magazine.
Here are some updated excerpts from her nomination for this honor:
In a place where pandemic superheroes abound, Joyelle Bateman is a SUPER Superhero. She literally has not stopped working for ten months (and counting) to battle COVID-19 on behalf of our entire continuum of care.
Originally employed to oversee infection control for our nursing home, as COVID-19 began spreading worldwide, Joyelle took over responsibility for managing the mitigation protocols and criteria of the virus control across all five JAA resident communities, which tripled her patient/resident universe.
Due to her diligence in keeping up with trends, she was the first to make staff aware of the virus on February 3, when most senior care facilities had not yet caught on to the nightmare that was about to begin. Joyelle’s ability to relate to staff at all levels along with her calm and controlled approach to communication gave JAA the opportunity to prepare more thoroughly and thoughtfully. She never panicked and kept everyone, including residents and their families, on guard as the virus spread. Joyelle carried out our CEO and COO’s directives, serving as “boots on the ground” for all nursing and clinical staff, JAA’s command center of 45 administrators, nearly 500 employees, 400 residents, and their families. She kept everyone moving through the steps needed to mitigate the spread of the virus throughout JAA.
Not only does clinical staff look to Joyelle for direction, she speaks the language of a nurse in terms they can understand and follow. At the same time, she gives everyone who is not as adept at the medical side of things the practical knowledge to accomplish their goals and contribute to the team.
Joyelle is also our education specialist at JAA so her skills at being prepared and up-to-date conversely affect the rest of the staff. Her ability to take clinical protocols and communicate them clearly to fellow employees with a wide range of expertise and knowledge is exceptional.
Joyelle is always offering assistance when needed. All with whom she works and those for whom she cares respect her compassionate approach to nursing and resident support. Nursing shortages are rampant in our business and Joyelle is the first to step up if an odd shift opens and she sees that she can fill a void.
During COVID-19’s earliest days, when proper personal protective equipment and supplies were incredibly hard to come by, Joyelle worked closely with our purchasing division and got the job done. We were always ahead of the curve, prepared for what was to come next. When the virus required universal testing of all staff and residents, initially the more difficult NP swabs were the only swabs accessible to the JAA. Joyelle donned full PPE and put herself at risk by testing everyone she could. It was tedious, tiring, and dangerous work but she was able to teach staff to get over their own anxieties about testing and, when less evasive tests became available, Joyelle taught staff how to self-administer them. Considering the apprehension about testing which our staff initially felt to how they eventually were able to test themselves is due to Joyelle’s patient and caring manner.
JAA benefits greatly from Joyelle’s calm, efficient, professional, and always helpful approach to infection control. We are so lucky to have her!