Nursing and personal care homes keeping elderly residents safe

Published 4:18 pm Tuesday, March 17, 2020

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Phone contacts were made on Monday with the various care homes in Bainbridge to see how the residents are holding up with all the visitor restrictions and lack of contact from the outside world.

At Riverside Assisting Living, Executive Director Sheree Hall, said they are all well and doing fine there. They have increased board games and Bingo and anything else to keep the people busy and their minds off the things that are going on in the world.

She was happy for the lovely sunny weather that allowed most of them to be able to get out and walk the perimeter and soak up some good healthy sunshine.

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“Our people are becoming creative in dealing with all this,” she explained.

Two of the residents, Helen Tillman and Tommy Wheeler, seized the occasion to organize and conduct a church service on Sunday for the residents, since most churches had suspended regular services.

Memorial Hospital Manor & Nursing Home has restricted all visitors, as well as confining all residents to their rooms as much as possible, according to Director Wanda Green. She said they are providing them with activities, cards and other games and magazines to fill their time. There are usually two to a room and they are not completely alone. They are being monitored and screened for any signs of illness. Green said it has been hardest on the families who cannot come visit, but they have been very cooperative and understanding, and she believes the residents are feeling safe there.

Bainbridge Health and Rehab Center, is also following a strict no visitation policy until further notice, while implementing all safety measures outlined by the CDC, including the frequent screening of staff and residents for signs of illness.

No doubt they are missing the regular visits from the volunteers who go in to call Bingo and lead the residents in arts and crafts projects, just as much as the volunteers are missing them.

Willow Ridge Personal Care Home is operated by Memorial Hospital and Manor. Director is Judy Phillips, who said their visitation policy is the same as that of the hospital—no visitors except in extreme cases. “They are not quarantined,” she added, but are able to go to a doctor appointment if necessary, and move freely around the facility. Phillips said the staff is doing well and they are all going by the guidelines of screening and taking sanitary measures. They are keeping the residents entertained with games, especially their favorite Bingo, conducted by the staff. One resident, Miss Williams, is a pianist and she can play just about anything according to Phillips. They enjoy sing-alongs and they have an Arm Chair Travel series to enjoy, along with Bible studies. Families may bring items to residents by the back door if they choose.