How The Coronavirus is Changing Senior Care
Now that the economy has slowly reopened, more and more families are slowly trying to get back to their normal life. But will life after the coronavirus ever be the same? Only time will tell, but for now we need to get used to the “New Normal.”
What are the challenges and important changes in Senior Care?
This pandemic has greatly affected the senior care industry. In an effort to avoid the spread of the coronavirus, all the facilities have implemented a “No Visitor” Policy for the protection of their residents and employees. This policy has forced senior care facilities across the nation to implement social distancing and other safety measures. However, the physical distancing and no daily social interactions have been causing anxiety, depression and loneliness in seniors. How can we avoid this? We need to make sure that we communicate regularly, daily if possible, with our elderly loved ones. This will make them feel loved and always remembered.
There will be regular updates and adjustments in the Senior Care industry, which will greatly depend on the state guidelines and regulations regarding the coronavirus. In the meantime, facility owners, staff members and families can help slow the spread of the coronavirus by following the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the local and state public health officials.
As for the Senior Care Industry, these are the major changes as a result of the coronavirus pandemic:
- Cancellation of all public and non-essential group activities.
Essential activities will be allowed with the implementation of social distancing. Maintaining a distance of 6-feet from each other will be strictly implemented at all times. Programs that will require external staff members will be limited as well as the number of participants.
- Visiting Policy
For right now, most of the facilities will continue to restrict visitors and non-essential health care personnel except for end-of-life situations. Some of the senior care facilities may start allowing a very limited number of immediate family members to visit, maybe one guest at a time, but this will depend on the facility owner/administrator. For as long as they feel that there is no risk involved and that strict health guidelines and protocols are followed, they may allow very limited visitors into the community. For an updated “Visitor’s” Policy, please contact the facility directly or you can call one of our Senior Care Advisors at 877-523-6523.
- Screening Visitors and Workers
Everyone who enters the Senior Care Community will be screened. This will ensure that anyone who is sick will not be allowed to enter the community.
- Wearing Face Masks
Per the CDC’s recommendation, everyone should wear a face mask, including those who are healthy. This will help in protecting everyone and slowing down the spread of the coronavirus.
- Regular handwashing and sanitizing
Proper hand washing for 20 seconds or more will be part of the resident’s and employees’ daily routine. Sanitizing stations will be provided around the community, especially in common areas.
More and more senior care facilities are starting to use telemedicine. This technology enables doctors and healthcare professionals to connect with the elderly virtually. Due to coronavirus, most of the facilities find this more convenient and safer for their residents.
Seniors in Assisted Living and other types of senior care facilities are at higher risk for coronavirus due to their age and their underlying health conditions. Having the ability to continue routine check-ups without going to the hospital or doctor’s office makes it more convenient and safer for the elderly. Telemedicine helps in social distancing and preventing the seniors being exposed the to the coronavirus.
Please note that the safety guidelines for each community varies. If you are interested in the current policies and procedures for a particular community, please feel free to connect with one of our Senior Care Advisors. You can call them at 877-523-6523.
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Catharine “Kate” is a Certified Administrator for Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly (RCFE) and an Expert Senior Care Advisor. Kate’s grandmother battled Alzheimer’s Disease and Kate personally understands what millions of families are going through. Kate and her team are very passionate in empowering Seniors and their families by providing them with the Best Available Senior Care Options based on Senior’s care needs, preferred location and family’s budget.