COVID-19 and Senior Living Update for September 2020
If you enjoy data and statistics, the Department of Health has weekly reporting on COVID-19 you can find here.
More testing is being done. Testing doesn’t imply a lot more COVID as I’ve had clients tested three times; 1 positive and 2 negative tests, within a week. Why are tests sometimes positive and the next day negative? I asked a neighbor that question who works in a lab and she said it is often due to the sample not being taken correctly. The majority of cases are in the community with only seven percent of cases in congregate settings.
Visiting Your Loved One in Congregate Settings
With the Department of Health rolling out new procedures for visits to congregate facilities early in August, senior living options have been putting their business policies in place. Essential Care visits are allowed at all facilities. How they are conducting them is not exactly uniform. LeadingAge reported as of Aug. 31 that 73 percent of assisted livings have enacted Essential Caregiver policies and currently 28 percent of residents have an essential caregiver. Some options are being more conservative than others with how they have developed their business practices.
We always ask about practices for each senior living option we are talking with as they are different. We remind our clients too that if COVID does enter a senior living option, then the protocols will change. Due to Department of Health Policy it is a moving target.
More Move Ins Happening
We do read and hear that more move ins have happened this past month than months before. Senior living options and people in general are becoming more familiar with living with the impact of the pandemic. In talking to one Vice President of Operations she gave me this analogy. Just like with 9/11 which is coming up later this week, which changed the airline industry forever, COVID-19 has changed the landscape for senior living. As we adjusted after 9/11, we will adapt to this new normal.