For months now most people in the US have been forced to rethink the way they work, live and play due to the coronavirus pandemic. But millions of Americans also take care of aging in place loved ones, which means the COVID-19 outbreak is presenting them with a unique set of caregiving challenges. Maintaining an independent senior’s quality of life under these unusual circumstances takes additional planning and preparation. If you’re currently caring for an elderly loved one, here are some practical caregiving tips to provide them with the nurturing they deserve during the coronavirus pandemic.
COVID-19 Caregiving Guidelines
Step one as a caregiver is following these COVID-19 caregiving guidelines from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- Contact your loved one’s health care providers to obtain essential medications and stock up on their over the counter (OTC) drugs.
- Be sure they are also stocked up on the medical supplies needed for treatments, including those related to wound care, oxygen, incontinence and dialysis.
- Purchase enough nutritious, nonperishable food for several months.
- Consistently monitor your loved one for COVID-19 symptoms.
- Clean and disinfect their home on a regular basis.
- Practice good hygiene whenever you are around them.
Other Coronavirus Tips for Caregivers
In addition to those listed above, here are some other ways to keep you and your loved one safer during the coronavirus crisis:
If your senior is used to being active and on-the-go, encourage them to stay at home as much as possible until things settle down. Many grocery stores now offer to-the-door deliveries, so start ordering food for your loved one online. However, be sure that all food packages are wiped down with a good disinfectant before entering their home.
Online pharmacy delivery services like PillPack can keep their prescriptions refilled with minimal contact and most will bill insurance providers directly. And whenever you are feeling sick stay home and find someone else to fill in.
Seniors are at high risk from COVID-19, so try to minimize contact with your loved one while in their home. If you don’t physically have to be there every day look for alternative ways to communicate with them. When bathing, dressing or grooming your senior wear a mask and
Reschedule wellness appointments
Because hospitals and clinics are risky places right now, reschedule any of your loved one’s nonessential medical appointments. If a doctor’s appointment is necessary, try to use a telephone or video-based telemedicine system whenever possible. Many insurance providers including Medicare are now providing coverage for telemedicine conferences during the COVID-19 crisis.
If you’re loved one’s emotional wellbeing is a concern, consider setting them up with an online counseling service so that they can speak live with a licensed mental health professional.
Keep in touch
Social isolation and social distancing are huge problems right now for older adults and their caregivers. Consistently keep in touch with your loved one by using the phone, a video chat service like Skype or another form of online communication. Make your loved one smile even more by including other family members in the virtual conversations.
Staying in touch by using newer technologies will allow you to consistently monitor your senior’s health status and provide them with reassurance without physically being there.
When you have other commitments, you can still provide your loved one with the care they need through:
- A meal delivery service
- Other family members
- Nonprofit organizations that work with the elderly
- A professional caregiver from a licensed home care agency
Your Trusted Source for Affordable In-Home Senior Care
Caring for an aging in place loved one during the coronavirus pandemic can be overwhelming at times. When you need a hand, contact Adultcare Assistance Homecare. As a fully licensed and insured home care agency, our highly trained caregivers are well versed on the latest CDC guidelines for COVID-19. While in the home our compassionate caregivers use a unique approach designed to maintain your senior’s quality of life so they can continue aging comfortably in place right where they want to be.
Our family trusted in-home services include personal care, respite care, companion care, transportation and even 24-hour care. And all our home care amenities can be individually combined into an affordable package that’ll put your mind at ease! To learn more about our COVID-19 safety protocols now, or to schedule a FREE initial consultation with a Adultcare Assistance Homecare case manager for your senior today, please visit us at: www.adultcareassistance.com.