Protecting Seniors From COVID-19

Protecting Seniors From COVID-19

While there is still a great deal about this novel coronavirus that scientists are working to understand, there are a number of things that we can do to protect seniors from getting infected. The following are steps that can be taken to reduce the chances of seniors being exposed to the virus. Let’s all do our part to stem the spread. Afterall, prevention is the best cure.

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While This Is An Especially Difficult Season For Seniors, There Is Hope, And The Elderly Are Not Helpless.

[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]While older people are known to have a worse response and risk resulting in serious illness to the coronavirus, caregivers can protect seniors. Prevention is the best cure.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]The best way to protect seniors, especially those with compromised immune systems and other pre-existing conditions, is to strictly follow the guidelines provided by the CDC. Residential assisted living homes provide the best safeguards and precautions against COVID-19. However, there are strategies that family members can follow to provide the best care for their loved ones during this season.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]The majority of older adults receive visits from family members. Unfortunately, this makes these seniors more susceptible to gaining exposure to the coronavirus. The following steps will help family caregivers take the necessary precautions to protect elderly family members from becoming exposed to the coronavirus.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]

SEVEN STEPS TO REDUCE THE RISK OF COVID-19 WHEN CARING FOR MOM OR DAD

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    1. It is very important to follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines for social distancing. Do not panic. Limit your time in public spaces based on necessity only. Remember, the best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to the virus.
    2. Keep as much distance as possible between people in the home. Do not share personal spaces. Make every effort to minimize the impact of multigenerational living to avoid the spread of the virus.
    3. Limit contact with your elderly family member to one person. Designate a primary caregiver in the home. This person should minimize their daily interactions with people outside the home to an extreme capacity.
    4.  Wash hands with water and soap for at least 20 seconds, as frequent as hourly. Regular soap and water is an effective protection against spreading the virus. If you are using a hand sanitizer, make sure it contains at least 60 percent alcohol, completely covering your hands with the sanitizer and rubbing thoroughly until dry.
    5.  Clean all household surfaces daily with disinfectants. Prioritize even more rigorous cleaning of high-use areas. 
    6.  Postpone non-essential doctor and dentist visits. Use tele-care if a medical or prescription concern arises. 
    7.  Spend some time outside. Take a walk, step outside to breathe some fresh air, or lead your parents to the porch while you plant some spring flowers or stretch your legs in the backyard. Use technology to help your elderly family member stay connected.

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SENIOR LIVING VS. MULTI-GENERATIONAL IN-HOME CARE AMID COVID-19

[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]If your elderly loved one resides in a residential assisted living home, it is important to respect the rules. Rules are put in place in these facilities to protect the residents and staff. Residential assisted living homes are dedicated to making the best care decisions possible during these unprecedented circumstances.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]The restriction of visitors protects residents from exposure from any viral danger of the general public. Removing a senior from an assisted living home is not a guarantee for preventing the spread of infection. In fact, the removal of senior surfaces creates a new set of complications.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]It can lead to further complications, especially amongst those with cognitive and behavioral decline. During a pandemic, a solid and safe in-home care plan must be in place, especially in multigenerational homes.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]Many families are not able to provide the proper level of care at home. As a result, seniors are far safer staying in a residential assisted living home. It is important to maintain communication, concern and updates about their care, but all of this can be accomplished from a distance.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]

BEWARE OF SOCIAL ISOLATION

[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]Although social distancing is the cornerstone of pandemic control, it can also lead to problems with the older population. Research shows that loneliness comes with its own set of health hazards.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]In order to promote virus-free activities, residential assisted living homes cancel group events and spend far more time in their individuals rooms. As a result, residential assisted living homes should switch to virtual meetings with friends and relatives, with the benefits of social engagement in mind.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]

STAYING ACTIVE DURING THE PANDEMIC

[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]Geriatricians fear that social distancing may affect routines in ways that can compromise the vitality of older adults. It is important to maintain good habits, including sufficient sleep, healthful eating and exercise. Exercise may be beneficial in fighting the effects of coronavirus.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]It can help boost the body’s immune functions, decrease inflammation and have mental and emotional benefits. Simple walks are easy to do while maintaining social distance.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]

PRO-TIPS FROM RALNA

[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”16px”][vc_column_text]The Residential Assisted Living National Association aims to provide the industry with best practices and ongoing information about COVID-19 prevention. Please visit www.RALNA.com for additional information or to become a member.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space][vc_separator css_animation=”fadeIn” type=”normal” color=”#eaeaea”][vc_empty_space][vc_row_inner row_type=”row” type=”full_width” text_align=”left” css_animation=””][vc_column_inner width=”1/6″][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”2/3″][vc_single_image image=”99″ img_size=”medium” alignment=”center” qode_css_animation=””][vc_empty_space height=”10px”][vc_column_text]

If you found the information on this article valuable, you’ll find enormous benefits by becoming a member of our community. Visit this page to become a RALNA Member.

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