Coronavirus Holiday Safety for Seniors

Coronavirus Holiday Safety for Seniors

With a vaccine nearly here, health officials are still strongly encouraging mask wearing and social distancing. In fact, many states have recently added new safety precautions – including limiting indoor gatherings to 10 people at a time.

This makes holiday planning a little tricky for seniors this year.

But, not to fear! Seniors can still celebrate and partake in all the holiday cheer. They just have to do it smartly and safely.

In this article, we’ve included tips on how to keep your senior safe throughout the holidays, as well as suggestions on how to help your seniors make the most of their celebrations this year.

How to Keep Seniors Safe This Holiday?

As a word to the wise, here are some basic safety precautions to take this holiday season. You may be tired of hearing these tips, but it’s always good to have a reminder every so often. Especially, when it comes to the health and wellbeing of seniors we love. And, make sure your senior is following all CDC health guidelines.

  1. Avoid large parties.
  2. Social distance.
  3. Wear a mask.
  4. Wash hands frequently.
  5. Keep some hand-sanitizer nearby.
  6. Find out the health status of your guests.
  7. Sit 6-feet apart when eating.

How to Make the Most of the Holidays This Year?

Just because there are extra rules and regulations this year, doesn’t mean the holidays are ruined. In fact, you may find that some of these safety precautions actually have some positive impacts on the holidays. 

1. Focus on What Matters

Over the years, the holidays have become so commercialized, that we’ve easily lost sight of what truly matters. The real meaning behind the holidays.

Now, we have a chance and a reason to get away from the huge parties and instead stay home with family. The stricter safety regulations this year have given us a chance to spend quality time with our seniors and the people we truly love.

2. Send Gifts Ahead of Time

Sales have already begun. This means, that you can easily start your holiday gift shopping now.

If you can’t spend the holidays in-person together, sending gifts ahead of time to your senior is a sweet way of showing that you care. You can also make it an activity over the phone, and help your senior send his or her gifts to friends and family.

3. Learn How to Entertain Virtually

If you’ve got a big family, video calls will be your best friend this holiday season. Put your senior on a video call to keep him or her safe, but included. You can unwrap gifts together, watch holiday movies together, sing together, play games together, or even just sit and chat.

Video calls are a wonderful way to spend time with everyone this holiday season, while still being cautious.

4. Send Some Holiday Cards

Phone calls and video calls are nice, but there’s something extra special about a hand-written card. It may sound old-school, but sending a hand-written holiday card or thank you card, will really show your senior how much you care about them and how much you miss them. You may even want to help your senior write out some cards as well! 

Ready to provide caring and capable Home Health to a loved one in the comfort of their very own home? AmeriBest Home Care can help you! Call us today by number: 215-925-3313!

Is this the Last Pandemic? Tips for Seniors and Caregivers to Prepare Mentally and Physically

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It’s crazy to think, but COVID-19 isn’t the first pandemic the world has suffered, and it most likely won’t be the last.

If you check back in history, you’ll notice that pandemics just happen every few decades or so. And, there’s no stopping them. At least for now.

So, the best we can do is prepare in advance, physically and mentally, and be ready for anything.

Here Are 5 Ways Seniors and Caregivers Can Prepare for a Pandemic in the Future

1. Make a list of essentials

It’s hard to think properly in the moment. When Covid-19 first hit, people went running out to the stores, buying everything in sight. This caused major chaos, as well as shortages of even non-essential items.

Avoid the panicked over-buying, and stick to a list. While you have the time to calmly think, now is when you should make a list of all the items you would want to buy if another pandemic hit.

2. Keep an emergency bag handy

You never know how badly a pandemic is going to strike, and how isolated you may end up. So, it’s good to be prepared for worst-case scenarios. Knowing that you’re prepped and ready for even the worst possibilities is a huge stress reducer.

You can buy pre-made emergency kits. Or, you can put one together based on what you, personally, may need. Consider items like: gauze, band aids, pain relievers, heat packs, tissues, fully charged power banks, solar powered flashlights, rope, water, etc.

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3. Stock up on non-perishables and freezer-food

Another item that will make you feel much calmer knowing that you already have is food.

Take some time now before another pandemic comes along to stock up on non-perishables and freezer-food. Nowadays, there are plenty of options out there, so you can really choose what you would actually enjoy eating (and not just old-school camping food).

Some foods you may enjoy are: BPA-free canned salmon, tuna fish pouches, boxed milk, nut or rice milk, coffee, spices, crackers, frozen fruits and veggies.

4. Include some self-care products

It’s important to remember that items for our mental and emotional states are just as essential as items for our physical health. While you’re stocking up on grocery items, throw in a few things for your mental health as well. Things like: face masks, puzzles, adult coloring books, or even a novel or two.

5. Look for sales

Buying all these extra supplies at once can really add up in expenses. And, if you’re looking at your list of things to buy and thinking you need to buy them all at once, you’re probably feeling a bit overwhelmed.

The good news is that since you’re doing this in advance, you have time.

You don’t need to go out of your way to do extra shopping. Simply buy doubles (or triples) of things you’re already purchasing. And, look for sales! For instance, if you’re already buying toothpaste one week, buy an extra tube or two to add to your stockpile. If you are already in an electronics store fixing your computer, grab an extra power bank for your emergency kit.

Prepping should reduce stress not add to it.

If you need our help, AmeriBest Home Care will always be happy to help you prepare for any necessary situation regarding our care for you.
Call the number: 215-925-3313 so that we can be useful to you!

 

Staying Safe as a Home Health Worker (Official Guidance)

As home health workers, we care for those vulnerable and at-risk to get severely ill from COVID-19. Learn how to protect yourself, your loved ones, and your clients. Below is the City of Philadelphia – Department of Public Health’s official document for home health workers.

You can also download this brochure by clicking here. Stay safe!

 

 

 

Protecting the Senior Community of Philadelphia During COVID-19

With so many heads turned toward the actual COVID-19 virus, the number of deaths caused by other indirect factors has received little to no attention.

Unfortunately, a large percentage of deaths during the pandemic have actually been caused by conditions other than the virus itself. Albeit, not unrelated to the virus.

With all hands on deck dedicated toward helping those immediately affected by COVID-19, fewer resources have been available to those in need of other types of care. Many seniors have suffered from not getting fast enough medical attention, as well as from lack of emotional and financial support.

The struggles have been especially hard for seniors who live alone and rely heavily on friends and family visiting. While social distancing has been a successful precaution against the virus, it has also caused many dilemmas for seniors who need help with daily activities.

In light of these deficiencies, many organizations and outreach groups have stepped up to give a lending hand to seniors in need. From grocery shopping to social phone calls, individuals have been working hard to ensure that our seniors stay safe and secure.

Supporting the Senior Community of Philadelphia

One such group that has persevered in its assistance for older adults is the leading home care agency – AmeriBest Home Care. Located in the heart of Philadelphia, AmeriBest has done nothing but focus on caring for its older adult community during the pandemic.

Here are just a few of the ways in which AmeriBest Home Care continues to care for its seniors and its caregivers.

Continual support for clients.

As an essential business, AmeriBest Home Care has been open and functioning throughout the entirety of the pandemic. AmeriBest’s caregivers have worked tirelessly to find careful and innovative ways of serving their clients in order to ensure that those in need still receive the medical and emotional help they require. AmeriBest caregivers continue to help seniors with acquiring food, medical supplies, medical treatments, doctors’ appointments, as well as help with everyday living activities.

Continual support for caregivers.

AmeriBest’s priority is not just its clients, but also its caregivers who give up so much to help those in need. Right from the start of the pandemic, AmeriBest’s administration dedicated its time to keeping caregivers in the loop with up-to-date information on the virus, as well as guidelines for how to handle COVID-19 situations that could arise with clients. AmeriBest continues to gather and share resources with caregivers to help them protect themselves and be the best caregivers they can be.

Taking COVID-19 precautions.

In order to ensure the safety of both caregivers and clients, AmeriBest Home Care has instructed all caregivers to wear personal protective equipment, wash hands for 20 seconds, use hand sanitizer, and to always be cognizant of coughing and/or sneezing into tissues and not touching their faces.

In addition to the above-mentioned precautions, AmeriBest Home Care also adheres to social distancing, increased office cleaning, the limiting of large social gatherings, and consistent monitoring of any and all virus updates.

For more information on how AmeriBest Home Care is taking steps to ensure the safety of seniors and caregivers alike, give us a call at (215) 925-3313.

We’re here for you.

What It Means to Be a Black Caregiver

What It Means to Be a Black Caregiver

In solidarity with Black Americans all over the country, raise a fist for Black caregivers of Philadelphia.

Despite social and financial inequality, Black caregivers have stood strong against the odds and made a space for themselves in the field of home care. Even now, amidst a worldwide epidemic, they continue to give help and support their clients.

They are the unsung heroes of our community, and it’s time to give them the recognition they deserve.

To all the Black American caregivers – we see you, we hear you, and we stand with you.

Food Drive and Personal Protective Equipment GIVEAWAY

Food Drive and Personal Protective Equipment - AmeriBest Home Care

AmeriBest Home Care will be hosting a Food Drive
and Personal Protective Equipment giveaway!

WHEN: on Saturday, June 27th, from 3 pm to 6 pm
WHERE: 990 Spring Garden St, Philadelphia, PA 19123

If you are an AmeriBest Caregiver or an AmeriBest Patient – WE WANNA SEE YOU THERE
at the back parking lot of our building at N 10th / Spring Garden St.

GET DIRECTIONS

This is a first come – first serve event.

We will be giving out FREE FOOD such as:
• Milk 🥛
• Eggs 🥚
• Cereal 🥣
• Vitamins 💊 etc.

We will also be giving out Personal Protective Equipment such as:⠀
• Surgical masks 😷
• Hand sanitizer 🧴🤲
• Gloves 🧤

For more information, please call ☎️ 1800-HOMECARE

   

   

 

Summer Activities and Alternatives for Seniors Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

While the world is on a temporary pause, the seasons wait for no one.
Don’t let the summer slip by without enjoying your favorite summer activities.

We’ve gathered some of the most common activities for seniors and listed the health risks, safety precautions, and alternatives for each.

In deciding which activities to do and how, the key is to analyze how each might affect you or your senior, personally. There is no one size fits all when it comes to safety and health, and so it’s important to use cautionary judgment.

Backyard BBQ

Health risk: Eating in your own backyard holds very little risk. However, inviting other families to join, raises the threat level to medium.

Safety precautions: Limit the number of families you invite to just one. And, choose wisely. A family whose members are essential workers will be more likely to carry the virus than a family whose members haven’t left their home in a month.

Alternative: Video calls are always a safer option than in-person activities. Every family can party from their own backyard, together. Or, make it a neighborly event and party from across the fence.

Summer Soirée

Health risk: Whether it’s a party for a wedding, birthday, graduation, or retirement- parties are a high-risk activity right now.

Safety precautions: If you absolutely must attend a party (although it is highly recommended not to), be sure to wear a face mask, gloves, and keep your distance from the other party-goers. Try not to touch anything unnecessarily, and bring some hand sanitizer just in case.

Alternative: A car parade! If you’re planning to attend a party, the better option is to drive by the party and stay in your car. You can wave or hold up a sign, and the hosts will be just as happy with your attendance as if you had actually come inside. If you’re the one hosting, stand six feet back from the street, and wave to your friends and family as they slowly drive by. You’ll be surprised how creative people can get from within their cars.

Dining Out

Health risk: Eating out at a restaurant is a medium to high risk. Dining at an indoor restaurant is a huge risk as it puts you in close proximity to other guests, with little air circulation. Dining at an outdoor restaurant is slightly less risky. However, the activity still puts you in contact with a server and possibly other staff.

Safety precautions: Bring sanitizing wipes and wipe down the menu before perusing. Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer before eating.

Alternatives: Set the table nicely, dim the lights, add a bit of background music, and order takeout. The food will be just as delicious, but with less of a risk.

Stroll in the park

Health risk: Walking in a park or nature reserve is a low to medium risk. There will always be others walking around nearby, which puts you in danger. However, being in a large open space lowers the risk.

Safety precautions: Wear a mask, and avoid going on busy days like national holidays. If someone is nearing you, step off to the side with your head turned away, and wait. When the individual has passed and is six feet away, continue on your stroll.

Alternative: If you’re going to the park for exercise, an alternative activity is walking around your yard. Set a timer, and walk the perimeter of your front and back yard for as long as you want. It’s not as exciting, but it will get the job done. Plus, you might even find some small flowers or quiet birds in your yard that you never even noticed before.

Family Caregivers: The Unsung Heroes of PA

Family Caregivers: The Unsung Heroes of PA - AmeriBest Home Care

No amount of praise and applause can express the true gratitude we feel for front line health care workers. While we sit at home and protect ourselves, these courageous individuals go to do battle with the COVID virus head-on. They risk themselves and their families to help others, and they deserve every bit of our unwavering respect and thanks.

Yet, there is another hero amongst us who deserves the same gratitude. There is another kind of hero who risks just as much from behind the scenes for not even a penny in return.

That unsung hero is the family caregiver.

Family caregivers administer medicine, schedule daily routines, cook, clean, provide emotional support, and more. Family caregivers are unpaid, overworked, and they don’t even mind because they do what they do out of love and genuine human compassion.

As of 2019, the AARP’s Valuing the Invaluable 2019 Update placed the number of family caregivers at approximately 1.59 million individuals in Pennsylvania, with expectations of increase for 2020. This amounts to about 1.33 billion hours of caregiving and a total economic value of $18.2 billion.

However, these 1.59 million family caregivers do not get paid for the hard work they do.

In fact, they often lose money caring for those they love. Most family caregivers spend thousands of their own hard-earned savings to care for their family members. And don’t mistake their willingness to spend this money as a result of rich or wealthy status.

No, many family caregivers actually lose out on the opportunity to earn more money because of the time commitments that caregiving requires. Caring for someone else’s life takes time. And that means less time dedicated to their own ambitions and careers. That means less time to work overtime and less time for side businesses, all of which could be making these caregivers some nice extra money.

Yet, family caregivers don’t look down or despair at these numbers. They keep their spirits high as they take life by the horns and charge forward.

While front line medical professions fight to rid the world of the disease, family caregivers fight to prevent their loved ones from getting it in the first place.

At this point and time, the best the world can do to fight against COVID-19 is to continue to flatten the curve. Rather than allow an influx of patients all at once, the goal is to spread the rate of infection over a larger period of time. This enables doctors and hospitals to administer proper medical attention to each patient, rather than be stretched thin.

Family caregivers are helping to flatten the curve by protecting those they care for. As a result of their care, seniors are able to stay safe at home and out of harm’s reach. Seniors are able to get food, household supplies, nursing care, as well as companionship and emotional support.

Thanks to family caregivers, the unsung heroes of PA, seniors across the state are able to continue living their lives as normal as possible.

Thank you to all the family caregivers out there for keeping our seniors happy and safe!

6 Tips for New Caregivers During the COVID Pandemic

6 Tips for New Caregivers During the COVID Pandemic - AmeriBest Home Care

Stuck at home these days, many of us are finding ourselves having to take on new roles that we would otherwise pay someone else to fill. And this can be a little scary to do without positive guidance.

If you’ve suddenly found yourself having to act as a family caregiver, here are 6 tips and tricks of the trade.

Write things down.

When you’re caring for someone else, it’s important to stay organized. It’s all too easy to forget someone else’s schedule, so make things simple for yourself and write things down.

If you prefer typing that’s cool too.

Just having a mapped-out list of what needs to be done and when can easily knock down the stress levels a few notches.

Automate as much as possible.

Another easy way to keep track of everything is to set up daily reminders. There are a ton of apps out there that can help with medication scheduling, appointment tracking, as well as just general to-do list entries.

These apps will not only help remind you of what needs to be done, but also give you the extra push to get up and get going.

Don’t be afraid to ask for outside help.

One of the biggest mistakes new caregivers make is thinking that they have to take care of everything themselves.

But the truth is, there are plenty of people able and willing to help. If you’re getting overwhelmed, stressed, or just want some guidance- don’t be afraid to ask for outside help.

Call up friends, family, or professional home care aides. And, don’t let yourself get to a mental breaking point before you do so.

Asking for help demonstrates responsibility and caring.

Schedule family time.

It’s easy to get so wrapped up in the work of caregiving, that you start to ignore the fun of it.

Caregiving is a remarkable task that lets you care, bond, and connect with your senior. If you’re not enjoying the work you do, you’re missing out on the core of caregiving.

To rekindle the spark, schedule some fun family time. This could be watching some TV together in the evening, building a project together in the afternoons, or even just bonding over some old photos in the basement. The main idea is to find something you both enjoy and set aside quality time for each other.

Watch your health.

You’ve probably heard this before, but you can’t take care of others if you don’t take care of yourself.

Letting yourself get run down and weary is no way to treat yourself as a caregiver. If you want to give your senior the best care possible, then you have to be up for the challenge and in good spirits. And, in order to feel that way, you have to take care of your own health too.

This means, taking breaks when you need them, giving yourself some alone time to refresh, watching your diet and fitness, and being overall kind to yourself.

Which leads us to our last tip…

Speak to yourself with compassion.

If you missed something on your to-do list, or you just didn’t have time to get something done- don’t stress. The worst thing you can do is beat yourself up over something you’re only just getting the hang of. You wouldn’t do that to others, so don’t do that to yourself.

Instead, look at where you went wrong with a non-judgmental perspective. Understand what led you to make that mistake and learn from it. Then move on and give yourself some compassion.

You’re doing the best you can.