According to research, the COVID-19 virus greatly affects people over the age of 60. Reports from the World Health Organization state that about 95 percent of deaths from COVID-19 are in this age group. If you are living with an older loved one, it is vital for you to take the necessary precautions to help them stay healthy.
Cancel non-essential appointments
If your relative is due to visit the doctor, then it is best that they reschedule it to a later date. Routine check-ups, annual wellness visits, follow-up appointments, and other non-emergencies should be foregone for now. This is to help both your loved one and their healthcare providers.
Facilities are channelling large amounts of resources into combating the spread of the virus. Sometimes, medical professionals from outside infectious disease units are being requested to render work in COVID-19 centres as reinforcement. Taking time off their hands by foregoing your regular appointment is the least a relatively healthier patient could do.
If you refrain from visiting hospitals and healthcare facilities at this time, you also reduce your risk of contracting the virus. Health-related concerns, if important but not urgent, can be handled by your doctor through teleconferencing. A remote patient monitoring system will also be helpful at this time, as it can alert your household to irregularities in readings.
Avoid frequently leaving the house
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends creating different plans of action before and during an outbreak in your community. They even have recommendations for when someone is showing symptoms and must self-quarantine at home.
The CDC maintains that one of the most effective ways of slowing down the spread of the virus is through social distancing. This means that you must modify your daily routines so that you can refrain from being outside all the time.
Older adults who live in nursing homes are at great risk of being infected, so you must be sure that they are getting the protection they need in these facilities. If you are anxious about their health, it may be wise to have your older relatives live with you for the time being.
Practice good mental hygiene
If staying apart cannot be helped, you should help your older relatives be more mentally strong through the crisis. Social distancing can create feelings of isolation and hopelessness, so it is necessary to make an effort in contacting your relatives. Have video chats with your family every so often, and schedule one-on-one calls with your older relatives if possible.
Older loved ones living with you can still speak with their friends in the community. You can arrange for “visits” in the yard or at your doorsteps, as long as they practice social distancing and stay at least six feet apart. Keeping in touch through social media is also a good option.
Be mindful of activity on accounts
Understandably, this global pandemic has made plenty of people stressed and anxious. As such, people might not be on top of everything—appointments may be forgotten, bills unsettled, and more. When living with an older person you must take care to remind them of their personal finances, like their medical insurance or bank accounts.
Help them keep track of their records by enrolling them in online tracking programs. This way, you can safely monitor activity without having to go to the bank or insurance office.
Living with an older loved one can be difficult under normal circumstances. In a community affected by the COVID-19 virus, it is especially challenging. Preparing your family for adjustments they need to make will help make the transition smoother.
Remotely monitor your older loved ones’ health through Medistics Health. We help patients and their families with chronic care management through our dedicated care manager. Get in touch with us to see how we can help.