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A Year of Lockdown and Loss

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The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent visitation ban have resulted in tens of thousands of residents suffering and dying from isolation, loneliness, and poor care.

Consumer Voice would like to honor and remember those we’ve lost and hear directly from residents and family members about their experiences during the lockdown.


Remembering Those Lost


Resident Dialogue

During a special dialogue, residents of nursing homes shared what their experiences have been like during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Voices from the Inside

Life in a Nursing Home During the COVID-19 Pandemic

    

Read Judith's message.

"I noticed that so many of my neighbors, whom I really cared about, went downhill so badly that they had to be put on psychotropic medications. I actually think that some of them did worse because I understand 'lockdown,' which they're now questioning, but I feel that some of them have suffered more from some of the side effects of being locked down so tightly than the coronavirus itself. They [staff] were very careful-- no one came in my room without a mask or any of that sort of thing... The boredom ... never seeing a family member. When you're at this age and this stage of your life those things can actually have a bigger impact on your health than worrying catching the coronavirus. And if you're depressed and so on, this is going to really affect you."

“We're in our rooms now … There's two of us in here … We can sit up in a chair but there's no place to go. You're just sitting. Same place you'd be almost in your bed. It gets old.”

“… our family and friends, we haven't seen probably in seven or eight months. I don't have any family but I have a family who adopted me. And to not see them, it's bad.” 

“We lost four people this year— good friends of ours. I never even felt it would happen to them, and it’s very hard to adjust to that our friends are not here anymore … different patients would come and tell me who it was, and it was a shock because they were really close friends of mine. I cried because we were all so close.”


Voices from Family Members

Nursing home residents need to be allowed an “Essential Support Person” during times of crisis - A story by Rev. Judy Young about her experiences with her mother, Charlotte Smith Bode, in a nursing facility during COVID-19 and her advocacy for an Essential Support Person.

Life for a Family of a Nursing Home Resident During the COVID-19 Pandemic


Resources

The Impact of Social Isolation on Nursing Home Residents During COVID-19 - Episode of Consumer Voice's podcast - Pursuing Quality Care - with Anne Montgomery and Sarah Slocum, Co-Directors of Eldercare Improvement at Altarum

Experiences of Nursing Home Residents During the Pandemic: What we learned from residents about life under Covid-19 restrictions and what we can do about it - Report from Altarum, October 2020

The Devastating Effect of Lockdowns on Residents of Long-Term Care Facilities During COVID-19 (January 2021) - Report from Consumer Voice summarizing the results of a survey of family members' experiences.

Not just COVID: Nursing home neglect deaths surge in shadows - Associated Press, November 19, 2020