Are Assisted Living Communities Safe During COVID-19?
The coronavirus pandemic has affected everyone’s daily lives across the United States and worldwide. The impact is often felt more by the senior community due to their increased risk of contracting the virus, which is why it is important to practice social distancing. However, this can make it difficult to determine how to move forward with your care while also keeping yourself safe, particularly if you need daily professional assistance.
Although it may seem that assisted living communities and other group environments are not the right choices right now, moving into a senior community is safer than living alone and not having adequate care. Learn how to choose the best facility that meets your needs during the pandemic.
Enhanced Safety at Assisted Living Facilities
Research shows that the coronavirus spreads quickly from person-to-person, increasing the risk of community spread. This may make you hesitant to move into an assisted living facility. However, remaining in your home can also pose risks, whether you live with family or alone. It helps to know that assisted living communities are implementing stringent safety and health measures to prevent community spread and keep everyone protected.
Assisted living facilities are adopting the following procedures to ensure the safety of their residents and staff:
Proper Hand Hygiene Practices
The staff at senior homes can help teach you the most effective hand hygiene techniques to prevent the spread of coronavirus. This includes washing hands with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds, using alcohol-based hand sanitizer, and wearing gloves regularly.
Strict Visitation Policy
Most assisted living facilities have measures in place to monitor the visits from family and friends. This will help protect you from being exposed to a common cold or flu, reducing the chances of contracting COVID-19. They also follow the guidelines put in place in their area regarding safe visiting practices.
The staff in retirement homes can help residents learn what they should do to ensure personal hygiene and safety. They will help you adopt preventive measures and make sure the facility is cleaned and sanitized regularly.
Preventing Exposure in the Community
- Ensuring the staff is well-equipped with PPE kits
- Regular screening for the staff
- Planning activities in advance to ensure there are no crowds
- Social distancing of at least 6 feet
- Proper respiratory hygiene
- Avoiding crowds in the facility
- Cleaning and disinfecting surfaces frequently
Also Read: How to Prevent COVID-19 In Seniors
Who Should Consider an Assisted Living Care Option?
Despite the pandemic, you should consider moving into an assisted living facility if you can relate to any of the following:
- Living alone and needing professional help with a medical condition that may require urgent attention
- Requiring regular assistance with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, and eating
- Having memory concerns such as dementia or Alzheimer’s, making it challenging to follow safety and hygiene protocols
- Living with family members who are unable to isolate or follow measures for social distancing
- Living in a place where you do not have a separate bedroom and bathroom
Questions to Ask the Assisted Living Facility
When you are looking for a suitable place to live, these questions can help you find a safe option that prioritizes hygiene and cleanliness.
What Precautionary Measures Is the Facility Taking?
Learn how they screen the staff members and sanitize the place. Ensure that the residents know proper handwashing etiquette and social distancing measures. Ask about the stock of personal protective equipment (PPE), face shields, masks, gloves, and gowns and what plans they have to purchase more if required. Inquire about the visitation policy, and make sure they follow state regulations strictly.
What Level of Medical Care Can the Facility Provide?
When you look at assisted living communities to move to during the pandemic, it is essential to gauge what COVID-related care is available, as well as the medical care they offer. In addition to this, ensure the facility has adequate staff members to care for its residents.
How is the Facility Implementing Social Distancing During Healthy-Living Programs?
Inquire how the community plans to adapt social distancing for communal activities such as exercising, eating, and socializing. Learn how they plan to implement physical, occupational, or speech therapies and visits from healthcare professionals. It is wise to know what they are doing to facilitate internal and external social connections.
Has Anyone Tested Positive for COVID-19 at the Facility?
Ask if the staff, vendors, residents, and anyone who has access to the facility has been infected with coronavirus so you have an idea of the potential threat. Also, inquire about how often they conduct tests and who gets tested.
How Does the Facility Notify Families of a Health Concern?
Assisted living communities and other senior homes are required to follow state rules and regulations to ensure the safety of their residents. They need to inform residents and their families or representatives in case of a positive COVID-19 accordingly. Ask what their protocol is for notifying resident’s families about a positive COVID-19 case and what steps they plan to take to manage the situation.
Holiday Retirement Offers Top-Notch Assisted Living Community
As one of the prominent assisted living facilities in Rhode Island, we are committed to providing you with the care you need at our facility. We will ensure you receive the best treatment and do not have to worry about your health, comfort, and happiness. Our staff will give you the love and respect you deserve. We care for our residents like our family and maintain the highest standards of coronavirus preparedness by following RIDOH guidelines strictly. In addition to maintaining a clean facility and hygienic environment, we are also scheduling regular tests and COVID-19 vaccinations to ensure maximum protection.
For more information about the COVID-19 safety protocols at The Holiday Retirement’s assisted living facility in Rhode Island, check out our Facebook page. You can also schedule a virtual tour of our facility to learn more about us. Feel free to give us a call at 1-401-762-4226 for any updates about our senior living community.