COVID-19 arrived without us being prepared as a society to face a crisis of this kind. The Coronavirus has proven to target the most vulnerable in our communities, the elderly, and people with pre-existing conditions. Since March 2020, Florida has had over 14,000 confirmed cases and 3,446 of associated deaths.
Nursing homes and assisted living communities were at the center of the news. Many people today ask themselves, is it safe to leave my loved one at an assisted living community right now?
The answer to that question is always personal because it involves family dynamics, and the individual, which makes it still a unique circumstance. But regarding COVID-19, is it safe? Yes, long-term care facilities were forced by the situation to become experts in COVID-19, their Staff is well adjusted to the new rules and regulations, use of the face mask, face shield, and other Personal Protective Equipment for their safety and the residents they care for.
Therefore, if you need to move-in your loved one into an assisted living facility, we encourage families to do due diligence, and consider:
- Keep the discussion going
- Moving in your loved one to an assisted living community is a family decision, bring people on board with the idea
- Get the family doctor involved
- Find out what your loved one will miss about home, and offer reassurance
- Review the finances
- Research the assisted living community you want to move your loved one into, check their webpage and social media, you will find quite some information there
- Contact the assisted living community and ask questions about everything is relevant to you and your loved one
- Ask the assisted living community to share with you their COVID-19 Policy and Procedures, Summary of Measures, and any other document that gives you a sense of the precautionary measures the community is taking to avoid the spread of COVID-19.
Due to a Governor’s order, visitation is not allowed at assisted living communities; therefore, you will not be able to tour the facility physically. Ask your Move-in Officer; they may have resources available to give you a sense of the accommodations.
Remember, moving to an assisted living community requires the individual’s consent. The only way you can legally force someone to move into a long-term care facility against their will is to obtain guardianship.
Once you decide, I think that older adults are safer in the assisted living community than in their loved one’s home. The assisted living communities are controlled environments with professionals that understand and follow the rules to avoid the spread of COVID-19.
At Residential Plaza at Blue Lagoon, we offer a safe and affordable home with assisted living services allowing older adults to live in a caring and supportive environment while maintaining their dignity, independence, and purpose. For more information visit: www.residentialplaza.com