The year 2020 has impacted practically everyone in one way or another, especially when it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic. Everyone can talk at length about how they have been personally affected by this virus. I thought it would be fitting to take a different approach and see different experiences from the standpoint of our elderly loved ones. We will cover the stories of elderly individuals in different settings like: Assisted Living, Rehab Facilities, Nursing Homes, Respite Care, Home Care, Home Health Care, Hospice etc.
At New Wave Home Care, we have been blessed with opportunities to work with seniors in all these settings. The stories are real, but to protect the identity and names of these individuals, some background details and some situational details have been altered. However, you will certainly be able to see how COVID has changed their lives.
The Impact of COVID-19 on Seniors Contemplating Rehab Facilities
Arthur was scheduled to have a knee replacement surgery. He had been an athlete all his life. Basketball was his thing as he was 6’6” tall, 230 lbs in his prime. While the game, the hustle and the strategy, was a lot of fun, the pounding that his knee took with each jump was not, as he would later learn in his golden years.
Arthur’s orthopedic surgeon was very good and had decided to do the surgery in April 2020. They discussed the surgery and after the discharge, they were planning to send Arthur to a rehab facility where he would spend the next 3 weeks in rehab.
COVID-19 Changes Everything
Covid changed all that. His surgeon called him to express his concerns about going to rehab at this time. “Arthur, it is not that the facility I have in mind for you is not good. They are the best. However, this COVID thing is no joke. These days the spread of COVID-19 is far more widespread in nursing homes and rehab facilities. I would hate for you to be exposed while you are at the rehab facility”. “So what can we do?” asked Arthur. “I have two options for you. 1) postpone your surgery or 2) get discharged to your home skipping the rehab”.
Arthur needed the surgery. His left knee was really bothering him and was affecting his gait. He had a few falls and his decision was made about getting a new knee. But, how is he going to rehab at home?
New Wave Home Care Provides Assistance
Arthur’s doctor suggested he contact us at New Wave Home Care. We set up a meeting with his doctor along with the physical therapist recommended by the doctor and Arthur. We set up a plan where he would do the rehab in the home. Arthur’s home was by no means set up to be a rehab center. We had to set up everything up as recommended by the PT.
Arthur successfully completed his surgery and was brought home upon discharge. Given Arthur’s size, we had to have double staffing for each shift. The PT, Ben was a gem. He trained our caregivers on all the exercises required for Arthur. The exercises, the duration and the frequency were all very important. Being an athlete, Artur had a tendency to push himself. “Don’t do that Arthur” said Ben, “more is not necessarily good for you. You might injure yourself more if you strain yourself too much, okay? Let’s pace this correctly”.
Arthur is back to his evening walks with his golden retriever, Martha. “I am glad we decided not to go to the rehab facility as originally planned”, said Arthur. “The news I have seen since then about nursing facilities and the rehab centers being so severely affected from COVID-19 is scary”.
Home Care vs. Rehab Facilities
With the current health situation in the world today, seniors and their loved ones are now shifting to quality alternatives, particularly home care. As a result, home care agencies, like New Wave Home Care, are now becoming a top-of-mind option for families living with a senior. Now so, more than ever before, there is increased awareness of the vulnerability seniors have to infection, so families are choosing to stay away from options where the health of their loved ones could be compromised. Right now, there is no safer place for our elderly loved ones to take shelter in than at home.
To learn more about New Wave Home Care now, or to set up a FREE in-home assessment for a senior in Southern California or the greater Los Angeles service area today, please visit us at: www.newwavehomecare.com!