At midnight one day last month, I got a call from a friend whose husband is in a memory care facility. Coronavirus was newly recognized across California, and in order to control infections, assisted living and nursing homes had begun to limit visitors.
Coronavirus: Tell Us What You're Seeing in Assisted Living and Nursing Homes
She couldn’t sleep. Her husband had called her dozens of times that day. He didn’t remember that he'd already called; he wanted to go outside and nobody was there to take him. He was alone.
“It is beyond heartbreaking,” she said, her voice cracking, again and again. “What are we supposed to do?”
While care facility operators try to figure out how to protect their residents, patient advocates are warning that isolation takes a toll on mental health. We know that as the virus spreads in communal living settings, those of you with family and friends in care facilities are wondering what’s safe.
We'd like to hear from you. We’ll use your insight and questions and experience to shape our news coverage. We’ll do our best to help you find answers and we’ll share what we learn from you along the way.
If you work in a care facility, or live with someone who does, we want to hear your stories too; you can choose to ask questions and share stories without sharing your name. (You can also email me securely at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
“What are we supposed to do?” is a question we’re all asking ourselves. We believe telling stories about what's happening in care homes right now can help us find the answers.