The Daily

We Are Responsible To Our Elderly: The Greatest Generation

In the end, we all got COVID-19. We were in the first line of fire. But the ones who bore the brunt of the virus were the residents. On April 20, 2020, when I caught it, 63 of the 180 residents at the home had already died. It was total chaos. We were forbidden from referring residents to the hospitals. There were bodies in body bags. We took food on trays to the residents, who were locked in their rooms, and we had no idea if they ate it or not. It was a terrible attack on human dignity.

Their families knew nothing ― they received dribs and drabs of the bare minimum of information. We were forbidden from using our phones to allow the residents to speak to their families over video chat. It must have been so hard not knowing if they were OK.

While this happened in Spain (link to the story here), we all saw similar stories here in the US: family members touching windows when lucky enough to do so as a substitute for visiting parents and grandparents.

The injuries or complications caused by medical error are increased in the elderly population, who are often vulnerable due to illness and have long lengths of stay. Congress found that between January 1999 and January 2001 more than thirty percent of nursing homes in the United States – 5,283 nursing homes – were cited for an abuse violation that had the potential to create harm.

Click here to learn more about my experience in nursing home cases and call or send me a message from the website if you have any questions.