the Ehpad favorable to “supervised” visits

It’s a sad story of containment. On April 9, gendarmes from Tarn imposed a fine of € 135 on a 79-year-old woman. For violation of “sanitary cordon”. In fact, the lady was wrong for coming to the closed window of her 93-year-old husband’s bedroom, confined due to the coronavirus epidemic in his Graulhet nursing home. With a slate in her hand where she had written him a few words. ” She did it every day, a few minutes, since the beginning of the confinement of the Ehpad, to help my father not to slip into his world, not to feel abandoned ”explained their daughter.

“The total ban on visits is no longer tenable

At the outset, the prefecture supported the merits of this verbalization. With the fear that other families might come together in front of the Ehpad windows. Then, in front of the media coverage of the case, she backed down to cancel the fine.

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But this story has marked a lot of Ehpad officials, already convinced that the total ban on visits was no longer tenable », Indicates Florence Arnaiz-Maumé, general delegate of Synerpa, syndicate of private retirement homes. ” From the beginning, we have said that, in this crisis, a balance must be found between the physical and psychological security of our residents. And while continuing to preserve them as much as possible from the Covid, we consider it urgent that links with families can be renewed “Said Pascal Champvert, president of the Association of Directors for the Service of the Elderly (AD-PA).

It is this strong demand for a resumption of visits ” framed »Families in nursing homes that professionals in the sector presented Wednesday, April 17 via videoconference, to Prime Minister Édouard Philippe and his Minister of Health Olivier Véran.

While worried about the deleterious effects for some residents, those responsible for the establishment initially welcomed the government’s decision on March 12 to ban family visits altogether. An exemption was then provided to allow relatives to come and say goodbye to a parent at the end of life. But even in this painful situation, many retirement homes have maintained this ban on entry.

Some people don’t want to eat anymore and cut off caregivers

On April 13, Emmanuel Macron hoped that the Ehpad could facilitate end-of-life visits, yet already authorized in theory. ” This statement by the President is a step in the right direction, but we must now go further by authorizing visits more broadly with all the barrier measures “Says Pascal Champvert.

Like other directors, he has noticed for the past ten days the multiplication of ” slip syndromes In elderly people who lose their will to live. “ Some no longer want to eat and cut off caregivers “Says Éric Lacoudre, director of the Grove From La Mandallaz to Sillingy (Haute-Savoie). An establishment hard hit by the Covid-19 in early March. Of the 81 residents, 18 died from the coronavirus. ” It’s terrible of course. But each time, we have allowed loved ones to come for end-of-life situations, he confides. They returned to the room one by one, equipped with the same protections as the carers.

Today, Éric Lacoudre is especially worried about residents not affected by the Covid but in great pain. ” For them, I decided a few days ago to organize visits to a specially equipped room at the entrance of the establishment. We bring in one person at a time with a mask and gel. And the instruction to respect the barrier measures “, Explains this manager, noting the effect” immediate Of these visits. ” All you have to do is tell a lady that she will be able to see her son or daughter again in the afternoon and she will immediately start to get a little better. “, Assures Éric Lacoudre.

It does a lot of good for everyone

The same goes for Florence Kovac, director of the Bellevue residence in Saint-Gobain in the Aisne. ” On Easter weekend, I authorized a resumption of visits to a very large pergola that we have outside, she explains. A total of 15 families were able to come, only children of residents. Except for a lady who received her cousin. We brought in two families each time for 30 minutes. Residents and relatives had masks, gloves and were located two meters from each other ” And Florence Kovac intends to renew the initiative, if it continues to be sunny. ” It does a lot of good for everyone “, she says.

→ CHRONICLE. Let’s stay together

In the Paris region, there is also this geriatrician who, in her hospital service, authorized ” in secret ”, A girl coming to see her mother on her 100th birthday. ” It was unthinkable that this lady would stay alone on a day like this “She said, before talking about this confidence from another of her patients. She said to me, “I would like my children to be there by the time I leave. Because death, however, only happens once in a lifetime … “.


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