NEWINGTON – A local home care agency has some urgent advice for the loved ones of seniors who are isolated right now.
Visiting Angels covers three regions in Connecticut, with over 700 locations worldwide, and its Newington office at 66 Cedar St. is heading up the corporation’s Support a Senior campaign, at #supportaseniorct.
“We’re looking to stay connected with seniors and their families, to give them ways to get through these very difficult times,” explained Mark Glazer, one of the owners and directors.
Health officials are recommending people – especially those over 60 – stay put right now, and social isolation can be a lonely place. The agency is reaching out to all its clients with dozens of suggestions to keep busy and happy.
“People need to be social and keep their minds and bodies moving, so when we do come out of this were not fighting deterioration of body and mind,” Glazer pointed out. “That cliché people are saying – ‘we are in this together’ – it’s true. We are in this together as humanity. All those things that separated us before, we need to close those gaps.”
Through its Support a Senior initiative, the Visiting Angels are promoting three tips considered to be vitally important for seniors right now.
The first is hydration.
Among the most vital parts of caring for a loved one who is aging in place is making sure they are drinking enough water. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about half of all falling incidents seniors experience are caused by dehydration. The loss of fluid leads to dizziness and vertigo, which lead to falls.
Arranging for the delivery of food and medication and other essentials is the second recommendation.
Lastly, the agency is advising families to stay in touch with their elders on a routine basis. Calling at a specific time of day is ideal. Socialization has been proven to reduce depression and loneliness.
“After nearly a decade in the senior living industry, we have an in-depth understanding of how to care for the elder population, and a responsibility to share that information with the public,” chief operating officer Robert Hill said.
The agency’s Newington office serves hundreds of clients throughout Greater Hartford, in assisted living facilities and private residences alike. Assistance is available 24/7 for a variety of tasks, from household chores and meal preparation to transportation and shopping, along with personal care, bathing and dressing. Costs vary depending on the level of care required.
“We’re private pay, and we work with those who have long-term care policies and we work with the VA to help our veterans,” Glazer said.
Client intake during the pandemic is being facilitated via online communication platforms like Zoom and FaceTime. Set up a virtual consultation by calling 860-372-4429.
COVID-19-positive individuals are not being accepted. However, the agency can provide a live-in caregiver to people who are coming home from a stay in a hospital and require a 14-day quarantine.
Caregivers follow standard protocol recommended by the CDC, wearing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
“Our first priority is always safety,” Glazer said. “In these times the last thing we want is for seniors to get hurt and end up in hospitals or rehab centers. Right now we need to keep them at home.”
Erica Drzewiecki can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.