“Too strict isolation is detrimental to residents in nursing homes”

“Great revolution in our Ehpad! We got two small computers, connected to a wired network, because we don’t have wi-fi. The challenge was to make up for the families’ visual absences: the phone calls were good, but the eyes were missing.

→ LIVE. Coronavirus: latest information from April 9

More generally, we have realized that too strict isolation is very detrimental for residents: locking up people who have a depressive syndrome, for example, only makes it worse. Also, the loss of reference has been accentuated: previously, small discussions punctuated the day, the meal times. We maintain room isolation, but we do it differently for meals. If the residents are still alone at the table, we are now placing them so that they can see each other, chat a little.

Who says psychological degradation, says physiological degradation

There is, however, an ambient heaviness, which is increasing. The situation is starting to be difficult for our residents, many say. We are attentive to their feelings, as soon as we perceive the lack of a loved one, we try to fill it, by all means. We must imperatively preserve their psychological state: who says psychological degradation, says physiological degradation.

→ RECAP ’. Coronavirus: most of the day of April 8

Especially since many of them suffer from pathologies, cognitive disorders, Alzheimer for example, and are not always able to integrate what is happening. They understand that the behaviors are different, that the hallways are empty, that we wear masks, but they do not have all the keys to understand.

→ WORDS OF CAREGIVERS. Coronavirus: In Bobigny, “we could not face a second wave”

Some days, the questions are very repetitive: the situation is explained several times an hour, but the residents forget it a few minutes later. You have to be patient, reassuring. A psychologist is still present in the facility, although residents refer more to us, the caregivers. We are their daily life. We, we maintain, these days, a big note of hope, one has the impression that the context is improving, especially since there are still no cases declared in our Ehpad. It’s a daily relief, but it’s important not to let go of our attention. “


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