“It was once said that the moral test of government is how that government treats …. those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped” commented Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey while running as the 1968 Democratic presidential nominee.
As we begin to open our communities amid the Covid-19 pandemic, we need to heed Humphrey’s words and make sure that these vulnerable groups stay informed and protected. Many older adults also have underlying conditions that make them vulnerable to the virus. Chronic conditions that make them more susceptible to the virus are adult onset diabetes, kidney and bladder problems, lung and cardiovascular diseases. This explains why 8 out of 10 deaths due to Covid-19 were individuals 65 years or older.
The older adults and their loved ones need to be aware of Covid-19 symptoms and the measures that need to be taken to protect them. Personal hygiene behaviors, social distancing and wearing a mask around the older adults population is the first step. It is encouraged that a Care Plan be created before it is needed. A Care Plan includes a person’s health conditions, medications, healthcare providers, emergency contacts and end-of-life care options. These plans should be update regularly to reflect any changes in your health and medication. Family and friends need to know where this information is kept.
Resources to help create a Care Plan are found at the following links
- Guidance on how to develop your emergency preparedness care plan
- Download a fillable care plan form pdf icon[5 pages]
- Serious Illness Care Program COVID-19 Response Toolkitexternal icon
Additional resources specifically for the elderly and their loved ones during this stressful and unprecedented time are found below.
- Retirement Insecurity during COVID
- Financial Assistance for Home Improvement for Older Adults
- Seniors and Financial Hardship
- Coronavirus Information for Older Adults
YCL staff have created a list of community resources that can be found on our website www.yorklibraries.org under the “What Can I DO ?” button across the top. At the bottom of the pull down, there is a page entitled “Useful Sites” in York County.
Remember to check in on those who are in “the twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the handicapped” through the coming months.