Keeping Seniors and Caregivers Informed
Senior Services of Southeastern Virginia is actively addressing the specific needs of older adults, aged 60+, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Click here for COVID Vaccine Information and Resources: COVID Vaccine Resources
What can family and caregivers do to help seniors prepare?
- Know what medications your loved one is taking and help them maintain the amounts they need. Let them know there should be no need to stop taking their medications or only taking partial doses.
- Monitor food and other medical supplies (oxygen, incontinence, dialysis, wound care) needed and create a back-up plan.
- Stock up on non-perishable food to have on hand in your home to minimize trips to stores.
- If you care for a loved one living in a care facility follow the recommended visitation policies. It is for the health and safety of everyone involved.
Important Note on Prevention
At this time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the following precautions:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
Know the facts about COVID-19
The CDC is your best source for timely, accurate information. Here are some helpful fact sheets and posters they’ve provided to help get the word out.
- Stop the spread of germs poster
- FAQ About COVID-19
- What to do if you are sick
- Things to Know about the COVID-19 Pandemic
- COVID-19 Checklist: Older Persons
Beware of Scams
Beware of fraud schemes related to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). There currently are no vaccines, pills, potions, lotions, lozenges, or other prescription or over-the-counter products available to treat or cure COVID-19 online or in stores.
The Department of Health & Human Services’ Office of Inspector General (OIG) has said that scammers are offering COVID-19 tests to Medicare beneficiaries in exchange for personal details, including Medicare information. However, the services are unapproved and illegitimate.
- Be cautious of unsolicited requests for your Medicare or Medicaid numbers, or any of your health insurance information.
- Be suspicious of any unexpected calls or visitors offering COVID-19 tests or supplies.
- Ignore offers or advertisements for COVID-19 testing or treatments on social media sites.
- A physician or other trusted healthcare provider should assess your condition and approve any requests for COVID-19 testing.
Follow official sources for accurate information.
In addition to test scams, the United States Attorneys for the Western and Eastern Districts of Virginia, the FBI, and the Virginia State Police have formed a task force to prevent fraud after receiving reports of treatment, supply, provider, charity, and phishing scams.
For more info, visit the Virginia Coronavirus Fraud Task Force website.
You can help control the spread of rumors by visiting FEMA’s rumor control page.
The Social Security Administration has also provided a helpful video on scam awareness, social security, and COVID-19 updates. You can view it here: Protecting You From Fraud and Abuse
Learn about fraud schemes related to COVID-19 by visiting Office of Inspector General’s COVID-19 fraud alert page.
We’ve compiled a list of useful links to help you stay well and be informed during this time:
Emergency Broadband Benefit Program
The Federal Communications Commission is launching the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program on May 12, 2020, a temporary benefit to help low-income households afford broadband during the pandemic. Eligible households include those with incomes below 135% FPL and/or those who qualify for SNAP, SSI, Medicaid. If eligible, qualified households can receive:
- Up to a $50/month discount on broadband service and associated equipment rentals
- Up to a $75/month discount if household is on qualifying Tribal lands
- A one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer (with a co-payment of more than $10 but less than $50)
Only one monthly service discount and one device discount is allowed per household.
Get an outreach toolkit from the FCC at: https://www.fcc.gov/broadbandbenefit and find consumer-oriented information at: https://getemergencybroadband.org/
The program will end when the fund runs out of money, or six months after the Department of Health and Human Services declares an end to the COVID-19 health emergency, whichever is sooner.
Village Connector Experience
The Juanita C. Grant Foundation is proud to announce the new Village Connector Experience, which will conduct outreach to older adults experiencing increased social isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Members registering for services may select motivational calls by trained Ambassadors Sunday through Friday, 1 to 3 days per week. Members may also elect to receive greeting cards, letters, and surprise packages. Virtual events available include coffee clutches, tea times and storytelling. The services are free.
From the Social Security Administration
From the Virginia Legal Aid Society
Virginia has created the Rent and Mortgage Relief Program (RMRP) to help households in need during the coronavirus pandemic. The RMRP is providing financial assistance for rent or mortgage payments to certain eligible households. This includes financial assistance for rent or mortgage payments past due beginning April 1, 2020.
From the Centers for Disease Control
- Video: COVID-19: What older adults need to know
- Family Emergency Kit Checklist
- If You Are Sick or Caring for Someone
- Guidance for Retirement Communities and Independent Living
- Preventing the Spread of COVID-19 in Retirement Communities and Independent Living Facilities
- Preparing for COVID-19: Long-term Care Facilities, Nursing Homes
- Retirement Communities and Independent Living Facilities
- Disinfecting Your Facility if Someone is Sick
- Nursing Homes Preparedness Checklist
- Key Facts
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Video: 6 Steps to Prevent COVID-19
- What You Need To Know About Handwashing
- Mental Health and Coping with Stress Resources
- Practical Tips for Caregivers Concerned About Coronavirus
- 7 Ways to Boost Your Loved One’s Morale During the Coronavirus Epidemic
- COVID-19 Checklist for Older Adults: Prepare for Coronavirus
- Coronavirus Information Tele-Town Hall
- Videos: Care Partner Support Tips
From the American Psychological Association:
- How Caregivers Can Be Prepared and Assist Others
- Older Adults and Disasters How to Be Prepared and Assist Others
Visit cdc.gov/COVID19 for the latest information and resources