How to help keep the elderly safe

They can be especially vulnerable to COVID-19, so precautions can be important.

Do you have an elderly parent, grandparent or friend and wondering how to protect them from the new coronavirus?

Here are some tips from geriatrician, Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital Chief Medical Officer Dr. William Rhoades.

  • For those who are elderly, staying home and away from people is the best advice
  • Do phone checks, FaceTime or Skype to keep an eye on them. That can be better than in-person visits
  • Consider dropping off items without a face-to-face visit, leaving groceries, medicine and everyday staples on the doorstep
  • Keep grandchildren away for now. Even if they don’t have symptoms, they can carry the virus.
  • No need to stockpile medications; large pharmacies are adding plans for increased deliveries and drive-thru options
  • If your parents are in a nursing home or assisted living facilities, you might consider bringing them home with you if possible. While facilities are working hard to limit potential transmission, there may be significant staffing shortages due to illness.

If an elderly person has questions or symptoms, they should call their primary care physician.

For more information about what to do if you or someone else is having symptoms, go here for more information.

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