Local elderly feeling the brunt of COVID-19 restrictions

Photo by Stacey Tinsley

Most are faring well, while others need help

Thousands of nursing homes and assisted-living centers across the United States are becoming islands of isolation as healthcare administrators take unprecedented steps to lock them down, hoping to protect some of the nation’s most vulnerable residents from the threat posed by COVID-19.


Savannah Grand of Bossier City Assisted Living and Memory Support Residence Executive Director June Bennett says residents at her establishment are doing well with the new rules that have been implemented.

“They understand we are doing our best to protect them, we are making it fun in house, kind of like ‘day camp’ activities, crafts, etc. — and arranging Skype, facetime visits – sending pictures, putting things out on our Facebook page and regularly speaking with the families to tell them their loved one is doing fine,” Bennett said. “It’s a challenging time, but we and the residents are doing our best.”

Understanding how difficult these changes have been for family members, Bennett is thankful for their cooperation.

“I’d like to say thank you to all of our families and friends who are observing our rules, as they know this population is the most vulnerable, and we’re doing our best to protect them and the staff that is needed to care for them, she said.”. “Please keep our staff in mind as they are showing up every day to do their jobs when so many others are home – they’re finding day care solutions, etc. because they care so much about who they take care of.”

Bennett went on to say that her organization will continue to closely monitor the spreading of COVID-2019 in our area and will continue following recommendations provided by state, local, and federal agencies including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“While the rate of transmission of COVID-19 is currently low for the general public, the elderly and those with a compromised immune system seem to have a disproportionately higher risk of contracting and exhibiting serious complications of the disease,” Bennett said.

“Given the demographic of our resident population we have a heightened focus on preventative measures to reduce the chances of the exposure to those in our communities. We have enhanced our infection control protocols and will continue following recommendations provided by state, local, and federal agencies including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).”

Another local facility affected by COVID-19 restrictions is the Bossier Council on Aging.

Bossier Council on Aging Executive Director Tamara Crane said since the outbreak occurred, the Bossier Council on Aging has been receiving many more clients needing meals.

“All of our senior centers are closed with Bearkat [Drive] only being open to staff,” Crane said.

“We are getting a lot of new clients that are needing meals now so we are increasing our numbers. We are accepting donations of toilet paper and soap to deliver to homebound seniors that need it. Referrals can be made by calling 318-741-8302,” she added.