CarePatrol is committed to reducing the spread of COVID-19. Read the full letter from our Co-Founder and President here

Safer At Home Or At A Care Facility During COVID-19?

The headlines are frightening: Descriptions of nursing homes across the country hit with a rapid spread of Coronavirus. And no doubt, these are truly devastating situations. These tragic events are heartbreaking. The high-risk residents of nursing homes and assisted living communities certainly deserve the best possible care and protection available to them.

Out of concern for their loved ones, I’ve heard from families who are considering moving them out of long-term care facilities into their homes. Under the right circumstances, this certainly can make sense. However, I want to encourage families to look at the full impact of this type of decision before making it.

First, let’s remember that nursing homes are highly regulated medical facilities with stringent safety precautions all aimed at protecting the health and well-being of the residents. Assisted living communities in Wisconsin are licensed and regulated by the state as well. During this pandemic, under the direction of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services and following CDC guidelines, these communities have implemented stricter protocols for their employees, and have limited visits to all but the most critical professionals who are providing essential care and support to the residents.

Before we bring our loved ones home form nursing or assisted living homes, let’s remember the reasons why they are living in a care facility. As I mentioned, these are communities that exist to provide care, support, socialization, safety and security to individuals who need their service. Perhaps your loved one has a physical condition that requires them to receive help with transferring from bed to wheelchair, help with getting dressed and showered, or help on and off the toilet. Are you able to provide that kind of care in your home? Is your home accessible for the individual to be able to move about? Maybe your loved one is living with dementia. People living with dementia need long-term care when they are no longer safe at home. Perhaps they wander and may walk away from the house when no one is looking, or they no longer recognize the difference between shampoo and a bottle of water. Maybe they need a full day of structured support to keep them from becoming anxious or fearful. Perhaps their days and nights are mixed up; awake all night and keeping the household from getting a full night of rest. These individuals need and deserve 24 hours supervision and support. Are you able to provide that level of care in your home?

Is your home Coronavirus-free? We don’t really know that unless we have quarantined for over 2 weeks. No environment is guaranteed virus-free, not even hospitals, where reports of employees getting the virus are reported regularly.

What if you try it, and things don’t work out at home? Your loved one may or may not have a room to return to. If they are accepted back into a community, they will face a full 14+ day quarantine.

There is no guarantee that your loved one will not be exposed to Coronavirus regardless of their living situation. Remember, nursing home and assisted living communities are professional organizations who are taking all possible precautions to keep your loved ones safe and healthy. It’s the purpose of their existence.

CarePatrol’s Urgent Mission: Find The Best Beds For Seniors Who Are Not In A Hospital

Not long ago, nobody had even heard of COVID-19. Today, however, it is a global reality and a mandate for businesses to serve in ways we never could have imagined.

That’s certainly what we’re experiencing across our CarePatrol franchise network. Because one audience that cannot and should not shelter in place is a senior in a hospital who could be somewhere else.

More precisely, as our country’s hospitals and health care facilities fight to free up beds for COVID-19 patients, these same places are trying to quickly and responsibly discharge some of their most vulnerable patients – seniors – who could be cared for in another environment. Similarly, senior living communities are taking added precautionary measures to ensure the safety and well being of their residents. This has resulted in reduced availability of options for older adults who can no longer remain at home.

CarePatrol senior care advisors have the most up-to-date information on communities that are accepting residents. There are even some that are taking care of seniors and others with COVID-19 who are asymptomatic or exhibit only mild symptoms.

As the nation’s largest senior placement franchise, we moved quickly to introduce virtual consultations with families, offering online tours of senior communities. Keeping older adults safe is our top priority, now more than ever. Our franchisees have done an incredible job working with our network of over 32,000 senior living communities across the nation in a very new way in order to support families making important and quick decisions.

And for families hesitant to move a loved one into a community during the pandemic, CarePatrol franchisees are also working closely with ComForCare franchisees, a sister company, across the country to arrange for in-home care as an alternative.

The incredibly powerful side effect to all of this is our growing ability to help hospitals free up beds and personnel in a critical time.

While we continue our mission to support seniors in the very best way, it is our added desire to support healthcare workers who are the heroes on the front lines of this very deadly virus. If we do our very best, and I see it happening every day across our franchise network, we can positively impact more than just our traditional client base. We can, in fact, potentially help COVID-19 patients also get the attention they need in the facilities that can serve them.

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As Brand President of CarePatrol, Becky Bongiovanni is in charge of day-to-day franchise operations including new franchisee training programs, field training, and ongoing mentoring and coaching for all local franchisee offices to ensure each CarePatrol local office masters the CarePatrol system. In addition, she provides leadership for the franchisee operational support departments in the home office. Becky is also responsible for the information technology infrastructure and systems that support all franchise operations. 

Where Can Seniors Safely Go After Being Discharged from Healthcare Facilities?

PHOENIX, April 1, 2020 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — PHOENIX, April 1, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — CarePatrol, the nation’s largest senior placement organization, is partnering with healthcare providers to counsel families on options for moving loved ones to safer environments in order to make room for COVID-19 patients.

“When it comes to our vulnerable senior population, being discharged from a hospital or healthcare facility and going somewhere safe comes with incredible responsibilities,” said Becky Bongiovanni, Certified Senior Advisor and Brand President of CarePatrol. “There are important added measures we are taking to still get care for loved ones while our population at-large is also being told to shelter-in-place.”

The franchise network has introduced virtual consultations with families, offering online tours of senior communities at the same time that those facilities are taking added precautionary measures to keep their residents safe.

“During this time of uncertainty, our locations are continuing to work closely with our network of over 32,000 senior living communities across the nation and we are supporting families making difficult care decisions in order to prevent a worse situation for a loved one,” said Bongiovanni. “It is also our desire to support our healthcare workers who are the heroes on the front line.  Recently, CarePatrol locations have started donating hand sanitizers, face masks and meals to local healthcare workers. We will continue to support case managers with timely and safer discharges. We want to do what we can to relieve their burden by counseling families to find safer care options expeditiously.”

And for families hesitant to move a loved one into a community during the pandemic, CarePatrol owners are working closely with ComForCare franchisees across the country to arrange for in-home care as an alternative.

COVID-19 and CarePatrol

In the midst of the coronavirus scare, seniors are still facing transitions of care. How is CarePatrol responding?

  • We continue to communicate with seniors and their families at no cost or obligation to discuss strategies and options for safe care transitions.
  • We are monitoring the Assisted Living communities and keeping a real time database of current admission and touring policies and room type availability.
  • Our CarePatrol database is current with information and photography of our provider communities for accurate communication with families.
  • Our Certified Senior Advisors (CSA®) have both laptop and Apple devices for virtual touring via Zoom or FaceTime if communities are restricting property tours.
  • We are an intermediary between healthcare discharge and assisted living professionals to ensure timely communication of acuity and condition of our clients.
  • If a client is facing an imminent discharge and an interim care solution is required, we can assist families to identify options including a respite stay or offering home care recommendations.
  • We help minimize exposure risks for all parties because we only tour prequalified and appropriate potential new residents to communities.

Our mandate is to provide safe and appropriate care and housing solutions for our clients. We share the mutual goal of keeping those in our care safe and healthy – both at work and in their homes.

Please be safe and continue in diligent healthcare protocol and precautions.
We will continue to serve and pray for you and the seniors we all serve.
Let us know how we can additionally support you during this challenging time.

“Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more so that we may fear less.” Marie Curie
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/high-risk-complications.html