Tabria Hunter, 21, spent the last 11 days living in a nursing home so she could learn to connect with the people who live their permanently.
The certified nursing assistant won a competition against three fellow employees at the Winnebago County-owned River Bluff Nursing Home to stay at the facility, living like a resident, the longest.
You might remember THIS STORY we published when the competition began.
The goal was to put workers in the shoes of their patients in hopes they could learn a lesson or two.
Hunter voluntarily confined herself to a wheelchair and simulated a slew of other ailments her patients deal with every day of their lives. She said learned greater sympathy for patients.
“I had one resident who was emotional about the (contest) because we don’t know her real pain,” Hunter said. “I explained to her that I can’t know her real pain, but that I’m trying to learn” what she goes through.
Hunter also had a message for family members of those in a nursing facility: Visit more.
“For a couple days, I thought I wasn’t going to have any visitors and I felt a little lonely,” Hunter said. “Although we do keep them busy there, you want to feel loved still. Let them know that you’re out there.”