Covid-19, more commonly known as coronavirus, is a serious, deadly, global pandemic. It is impacting lives around the world and with a mortality rate currently at 3.8%, it’s critical that aging men and women pay attention to it.

Assisted living communities are foundations for quality living, safety, and security for aging Americans. It is important that these communities rally together and take necessary steps to protect their residents from the spread of this potentially deadly virus.

Where did coronavirus start?

It has been traced to a small region in China with the first reported case believed to have been detected November 17, 2019. The first case reported in the United States occurred in January.

It may not necessarily be the mortality rate of coronavirus that has many Americans hunkering down, sporting events canceled, and schools shutting for weeks or even months, but rather the morbidity rate.
This refers to how quickly it can spread throughout communities. What makes coronavirus different than the flu or other similar viruses is that a person may be contagious up to five days before symptoms start showing. With most other illnesses, a person is not contagious until they start showing symptoms.

How is coronavirus affecting assisted living communities?

Depending on the facility, elderly residents may no longer be receiving visitors for an indefinite period of time. That means family and friends who may wish to visit might have to wait until the outbreak is under control to once again spend time with their elderly loved ones.

This may seem to be a violation of a person’s rights, dignity, and freedom, but it is meant to help protect the most vulnerable population in the country: the elderly.

While most younger, healthier, stronger adults will be able to overcome the coronavirus should they become infected with basic over-the-counter medications, because the way it attacks the respiratory system, seniors can face life-threatening conditions.

So, it is reasonable and responsible for some assisted living communities to limit visitation or ban it all together for a couple of weeks or slightly longer.

Assisted living facilities will also take additional steps to wipe down and sanitize most surfaces as much as they can for the next several weeks. While these steps are often generally taken anyway, a ramped up effort can help to knock down any potential outbreak within one of these communities.

There is no reason for family or friends to become overly alarmed or agitated or panic if an assisted living facility decides to take responsible measures to protect their residents. They’re looking out for the best interest of the seniors in their care.

Avonlea Cottage of Dixon is licensed in the state of Illinois as a shared housing establishment. It is a private home-like environment for seniors suffering from memory loss issues. If you, or an aging loved-one, are considering assisted living in Sycamore, IL, call us to get more information and schedule a tour. (815) 288-6044.

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