Older adults are especially vulnerable to contracting the deadly COVID-19. Those at the highest risk for severe illness are people 65 or older and people who live in nursing homes or at long-term care facilities, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
TLC Companions Home Healthcare, with locations in both New York and New Jersey, have been serving elderly patients in their home throughout the pandemic. Its caregivers also visit patients living in assisted senior facilities. Owner Greg Massimi said the company and its employees have adapted quickly to care for some of the most vulnerable in our community.
“We have had great success,” Massimi said. “But we’re not letting our guard down.
Anton Media Group spoke with Massimi about how at-home senior care has changed due to COVID-19.
Q. How has COVID-19 impacted the way TLC Companions Home Healthcare visit patients in their homes or at assisted living facilities?
A. We have been making sure that all our caregivers have masks, gloves, hand sanitizer and anything else they need to ensure safety. We have kept our caregivers who visit assisted living facilities separate from our at-home caregivers. If caregivers work in a private home, that is where they have remained during the pandemic. If they work in an assisted living community, that is where they have stayed during the pandemic. We don’t want to take a chance.
Q. Now that we are in Phase 4, does that allow you to expand your services again?
A. We are one of the few businesses that has grown during COVID. More people are going back to work now so we are getting more calls. People are asking, ‘I have to go back to work, can you please come take care or my mom or my dad?” At the same time, we have been picking up cases throughout the pandemic, visiting patients who were stuck in rehab facilities, and couldn’t see their families. Some of these facilities were understaffed and overwhelmed, so it was hard. It wasn’t just about patients becoming sick from COVID, they were becoming depressed and isolated. We made sure our patients ate and had someone to talk to—whatever they needed. We are always accessible.
Q. How have you been supporting your employees during the pandemic?
A. We have gone to great lengths to make sure that our caregivers are provided with the best PPE available. This assures their safety, as well as the safety of our clients. We have been providing hazard pay to our caregivers since the beginning of this pandemic to show our gratitude to our courageous front line workers.
Learn more about at-home care at www.tlccompanions.com, or by calling 516-719-0909.