Fort Wayne, IN, March 26, 2020 – Due to the pandemic, Assisted living facilities have experienced some of the strictest limitations put in place local and state health departments. This includes restricting visitors, including family, from our communities, and social distancing within our communities. In turn, this has led to creative ways to keep residents in touch with their families and engaged within the community.
At Priority Life Care communities, residents are having “window visits” with family, learning new technology such as FaceTime, Google Hangout, and Skype, sending video messages to loved ones, celebrating birthdays, and engaging in solitary activities like crossword puzzles, gardening, and arts and crafts.
Staff is in on it and gladly sends captured moments to family members through email and text.
“Each of our communities’ Facebook posts are updated at least daily, and sometimes even by the hour,” says Brandie Petras, National Director of Marketing & Sales for Priority Life Care. “We have engaged the staff of all of our communities to be a voice for our residents to show off how positive and optimistic our residents and staff are at this time.”
Even with the threat that COVID-19 has on the senior generation, Petras says that it has created an even stronger bond for the resident, staff, and family members.
“Any form of communication that is easy for our family members, that is how we are connecting,” she said.
One resident recently celebrated a 95th birthday, and to mark the occasion, her family, including grandchildren, sang and brought signs to show their love for their grandmother.
The entire assisted living was touched and everyone had a smile on their face that day.
Facetime has been a key ingredient in keeping residents and families connected.
“The residents get very excited to see their loved ones on the screen,” says Petras. “You have to understand that for some, video calls were once a dream of the future. So watching their faces when they figure it out has been priceless.”
Communities are also using technology like the OneDay app which gives staff a way to prompt residents with questions. Questions can range from stories about their childhood to their current favorite interests. It is a great way to memorialize stories for years to come.
Staff regularly connects with families to let them know how their loved ones are doing.
“This extra communication is imperative when families cannot come in and see for themselves how their loved one is doing,” Petras states. “But we’ve had overwhelmingly positive reactions and everyone is grateful for the extra mile our staff has gone.”
Families have sent staff thank you cards, flowers, and food, to show their appreciation.
And during this time, Petras says the staff’s role is more important than ever.
“We are not only their caregivers but a part of their family,” Petras said.
Anyone who would like to send letters, cards, or even care packages or activity kits to residents are welcome to do so and can find community addresses at www.prioritylc.com/communities or email videos to firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also keep up with Priority Life Care posts at https://www.facebook.com/PriorityLifeCare/.
Priority Life Care owns and manages Senior Living and has a mission of supporting independence. We believe everyone deserves dignity, compassion, and respect. With an intentional focus on healthy choices and an active lifestyle, our residents can live their retirement life to their fullest. For more information, visit www.prioritylc.com.