We understand first and foremost how difficult the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak is for people with family members or friends residing in our communities. Our own staff who have family members and friends in similar residences are experiencing this trying situation themselves.
In an effort to keep our Residents and Clients safe and healthy, we have taken various precautions, as mandated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the MA Department of Public Health (DPH). One of these requirements is restricting visitation, which refers to family and friends of Residents.
We have created a list of frequently asked questions to help those who are understandably concerned:
How is the elderly population being protected against COVID-19?
Our staff is routinely trained on everyday prevention measures. In addition, the team is encouraged to remind and confirm that Residents follow general sanitary regulations as well. The CDC and the World Health Organization (WHO) are recommending these simple measures as the most effective way to reduce COVID-19.
- Frequent hand washing
- Maintaining a 6-foot distance from anyone who is coughing or sneezing
- Avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
- Appropriately covering coughs and sneezes
Each of our campuses is appropriately equipped with all necessary supplies and resources, as outlined by the CDC:
- Alcohol-based hand sanitizer
- Well-stocked bathrooms (running water, soap, and paper towels)
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- Trash disposal bins
In addition to these supplies, each community has healthy food and water shipped directly to us from a large distribution warehouse as well as medications shipped directly from the pharmacy.
What signs should I be looking for that my elderly family member or friend might have COVID-19?
The CDC describes the symptoms for COVID-19 as:
- Shortness of breath
Our staff members consistently monitor the health and well-being of our Residents and Clients through acute observation and regular temperature checks. Right now, all staff are having their temperatures taken prior to the start of their shifts and Residents’ temperatures are being taken daily.
How can I communicate without visitations?
We are offering alternative means of communication, such as virtual contact via a phone call or video-communication, for those who would otherwise visit.
In addition, we are encouraging family members and friends to write letters and create care packages to send to Residents—maybe this method of communicating will bring back fond memories for Residents who didn’t grow up with the technology of today!
What is my family member or friend doing while in their residence with us?
Although our Residents are self-isolating in their apartments, our recreation team, as always, is devising unique daily activities, exercises, and other creative ways for Residents to spend their time. We can reassure you that they are still enjoying the following programs:
- Exercises either in-person or virtually
- Trivia games
- Brain-health games using Vigorous Mind
- Live streaming of various programs, per interest of Resident, examples:
- Religious services
- Virtual museum tours
- Virtual concerts
- Concierge carts
- Door to door café and food prepared safely by dining teams
- Arts and crafts cart
- Movie concession cart
Your family member or friend may be enjoying themselves far more than others!
Where can I learn more about COVID-19?
Knowledge is power. To learn more about COVID-19, visit:
- CDC’s Coronavirus Disease 2019
- World Health Organization’s Coronavirus disease advice for the public
- Massachusetts Information on the Outbreak of COVID-19
The COVID-19 outbreak is alarming to many. However, staying informed and reassured that your family members or friends are well attended makes all the difference—to everyone. We will continue to regularly update our webpage on our precautions and safety measures as necessary.
Most importantly, if you ever have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Debbie Freedman, our Director of Clinical Services at SALMON Health and Retirement at 508-244-2348 or your Executive Director. We are always available to speak with you.