By Steve Svetovich
When Dunmore’s Sarah Naro received her bachelor of science degree in nursing from Marywood University four years ago, she did not envision herself working during a world pandemic, but here she is.
Sarah, 30, takes her role as a home health registered nurse very seriously. She was more than prepared when the Covid-19 Virus hit the Northeast PA region.
A home health nurse for Comprehensive Home Health Services, Dupont, Sarah sees patients in the comforts of their home all day during her travels. Most of her patients are in Lackawanna County, but she also sees patients in Luzerne, Monroe, Wayne and Wyoming Counties.
Daughter of Lisa and Paul Rome, she is married to Jeff Naro, a 2006 Dunmore High School graduate. The couple has two boys and one girl, Mason, 7, Giovanni, 4, and Calli, 5. Mason and Calli are students at the Dunmore Elementary School.
Her husband is the son of Sal and Theresa Naro, Dunmore.
Sarah said she had a strong feeling since January that Covid-19 was coming to this country and she was preparing for it.
“I was tracking it quite a bit before it came to the United States,” she said. “I was tracking China and knew about it. I already had masks ready. I was not at all surprised when it came here, but I was still nervous.
“I worked in an operating room before, so wearing a mask was not new to me. I knew what precautions I needed to take when seeing patients in their homes. I have my masks and gloves and sanitizer. I wash my hands constantly. But I have to trust that my patients are taking the same necessary precautions that I am. I need to question and educate them.
“Obviously, I don’t want to pick up the virus. I don’t want to bring it home to my husband and kids. And I want to educate my patients and their family members so they don’t pick it up.”
Sarah said initially, with Covid-19 in full force, she thought her patient load would be slowing down. And that was the case, but soon it picked up.
“I thought it would be slow, and then I saw it happen when a few patients refused visits. They were afraid of the virus. But after they saw we were educating them and we were wearing masks and gloves they became more comfortable with the visits. We reassure them. We protect ourselves and our patients.”
Sarah takes every patient’s temperature prior to each visit and takes vital signs, including blood pressure, heart rate and oxygen level. She works closely with home health occupational, physical and speech therapists, certified nurse aides and administrative staff.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, before each visit she asks patients and family members if they have been in contact with anyone diagnosed with Covid-19 or if they or any members of the household have Covid-19 symptoms, including high temperature, cough, loss of taste and smell, weakness, fatigue and muscle aches. She asks if the patient or any member of the household has been out of the state or country.
“I was initially worried about how our patients and family members would handle us coming in to see them because we see multiple patients in different homes. But they see us protecting ourselves and thus protecting them.”
Sarah said her husband is also taking all necessary precautions as an employee of Valley Distribution Company, Pittston, where he is involved in distribution of various supplies, including medical supplies.
“I am worried that once people think they are comfortable, they can slack off. I have three kids who are home. And I think it is good they are home with all this going on. But I do not want to bring this virus home. That is always on the top of my mind.”
Sarah was raised in Hawley and graduated from Wallenpaupack High School in 2008. She moved to Dunmore in 2010 and has resided in Bucktown for the past decade. She attended Luzerne County Community College before transferring to Marywood where she received her nursing degree in 2016.
Sarah started her nursing career in the Geisinger Wyoming Valley Hospital, working in the operating room for two years. She has been a home health nurse the past two years at Comprehensive Home Health Care, Dupont, owned and operated by Janet and Tony Trombetta.
“I am really finding out quickly that nursing is what I was supposed to do in life,” the Dunmore nurse said. “I was a bit shell shocked when I started in clinical nursing, but I got used to it. Some days were very challenging, but I knew I could do it. It provided very good experience. And many days are challenging now with Covid-19 upon us.”
Sarah is in her nursing role on the front line as an essential worker everyday, mask, gloves, nursing bag, sanitizer, gown if necessary and a scrub cap for her long, flowing hair. She takes all the necessary precautions and that is one less worry for her patients.
A salute to Sarah Naro, B.S.N., and all the essential workers on the front line.