Visiting a senior community?
Etiquette in the era of COVID-19
We’re living in a new world since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Meeting with loved ones who don’t live in your home has become a potentially dangerous activity if special precautions aren’t taken. This is especially true when meeting with older or immunocompromised family members. To help protect yourself and your loved ones, learn some of the do’s and don’ts of what should happen during a visit to a senior living community. To ensure you have the most up-to-date guidelines, be sure to check the community’s website or call directly.
Do visit outdoors, if possible. The chance of transmitting COVID-19 is significantly lower outside. Just be cautious of how the weather will impact the visit, including extreme temperatures, harsh winds, exposure to the sun, and rain or snow.
Don’t try to visit until the community has no new COVID-19 cases. Most communities don’t allow visitations until there are zero residents with a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19.
Do schedule the visit in advance. Visitors who show up without an appointment will likely be turned away.
Don’t come as a group. Keep your numbers to one or two visitors.
Do wear a mask. Personal protective equipment (PPE) will help protect those around you from contracting the coronavirus.
Don’t get too close. We all love a good hug, but to help keep everyone safe, it’s important that you maintain a 6-foot distance from one another and avoid all physical contact.
Do expect to be screened. Visitors and residents will likely be screened before the visitation. This may consist of filling out a symptom checker and getting temperature checked.
Don’t eat food together. Removing PPE is unavoidable when eating food, which can defeat the purpose of wearing PPE in the first place. You could eat while maintaining a distance of 20 to 30 feet, but that may not be a practical option.
Do plan ahead. In the two weeks prior to the visitation, minimize outings and social gatherings. This will limit your ability to become infected and unintentionally spread COVID-19 during the visit.
Don’t bring little ones. Unless you’re confident that your young children can follow all the proper precautions, they could pose an unintended risk.
It’s important to stay connected
Seniors are already at risk for feelings of isolation. That’s why we encourage safe visits with family members on a regular basis. To learn more about the precautions we’re taking at Presbyterian Communities of South Carolina and how to request a visitation, please call the community directly.