With the ongoing pandemic taking place, many are concerned for the well-being of seniors as they are the ones that are highly affected during this outbreak. While more than 40 million family caregivers are already assisting their loved ones at home, there is expected to be an even higher increase now. Preparing seniors and caregivers during the Coronavirus means it is important to follow all procedures recommended by the Center for Disease Control and prevent the spread of germs.
How to prevent the spread of germs
It is important that now, more than ever, we follow all procedures recommended by local government to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. In order to protect yourself, your loved one, and your community the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends you do the following:
- Stay Home. Practice social distancing and avoid going out unless it is necessary for work or essentials.
- Wash your hands often. When caring for a senior, remember to wash your hands often for 20 seconds minimum every time. For seniors, washing your hands very often might cause dryness to sensitive skin. Always remember to moisturize after washing your hands to avoid drying out your hands.
- Avoid close contact. The required distance between people is six feet, which is approximately two arm’s length apart. This is especially recommended if you or your loved one is sick.
- Clean and disinfect. Frequently clean and disinfect common areas, surfaces, and doorknobs as they are most likely to spread germs.
- Avoid travel. During this time, it is not recommended you travel. Traveling via aircraft or cruise ship is one easy way to spread germs or become infected with the virus.
Preparing Seniors and Caregivers during Coronavirus
To remain safe during this time, it is important to prepare seniors and caregivers for the coronavirus. If you are new to caring for someone or are struggling with creating a plan on how to care for yourself, here are a few tips on how you can prepare for COVID-19:
- Put together a team. Create a list of family members and friends that can help you perform key tasks for your loved one. It is also helpful to create of list of the nearest hospitals, supermarkets that cater to elderly, and other local services that can assist with delivering or picking up medications.
- Inventory essential items. Determine how much food, medication, and basic supplies you or the person you are caring for has at home. Make sure to have at least a two-week supply of food, water, cleaning supplies, and medical equipment (if needed).
- Create a list of medications. – Make sure all of your medical needs are taken care of. Create a list of any necessary medications and medical contacts for your caregiver. If you have an appointment coming up in the next month or so, try rescheduling to a later date or consider having a virtual appointment if offered by your doctor. We recommend having an extra 30 days’ supply of essential medications on hand and any over the counter medications as well.
- Create a plan to remain in contact. – As time progresses throughout the duration of your isolation, you may begin to feel lonely. It is important to set up a communications plan to help keep in touch with your loved one and your team. Try using different technologies such as FaceTime, Google hangouts, Skype, or simple a phone and text message. Social media is another powerful tool that can allow us to stay connected throughout this difficult time. As an alternative, send cards or letters your loved one might be happy to receive.
- Maintain personal hygiene and safety. – In order to be safe and remain healthy, keep up with your personal hygiene and limit contact with visitors. While caregivers might be in isolation with their loved ones, it is essential to also care for yourself and care for yourself as well.
We understand that this is an anxious time for some caregivers and elders, but we want you to know that 24/7 Nursing Care is here to support you and your needs.
If you fear your loved one might not be able to handle caring for themselves during this pandemic, please consider contacting 24/7 Nursing Care to help provide you and your senior with the best care possible. We offer a variety of services tailored to your loved ones needs and follow all CDC procedures to make sure our caregivers and clients are well protected during this time. For more information on how we can help you, contact us at (786) 518-3622 for Miami-Dade or (954) 949-1332 for Broward County. Stay safe!