The following opportunity has been shared on behalf of a member or affiliate of the Austin Area African American Behavioral Health Network.
COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Information
The situation around the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has prompted AGE of Central Texas to take additional measures to mitigate the chance of the coronavirus taking hold in our facilities, and in order to protect our staff and clients. These are evidence-based and common sense based steps that are our first line of defense in the process of stopping the spread of germs and viruses. We will continue to monitor the coronavirus situation, follow the advice of local and national health authorities, and adapt our policies and procedures as necessary.
Resources for Caregivers and Older Adults:
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has identified older adults – those ages 60 and older – and people who have severe chronic medical conditions such as heart, lung, or kidney disease to be at higher risk for more serious COVID-19 illness.
AGE of Central Texas encourages all caregivers and older adults to follow the expert advice given from the CDC, which is recommending that people at higher risk take the following actions:
- Stay at home as much as possible.
- Make sure you have access to several weeks of medications, food, and supplies in case you need to stay home for prolonged periods of time.
- When you go out in public, keep away from others who are sick, limit close contact, and wash your hands often.
- Avoid crowds.
The CDC is also recommending these common-sense tips:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
For family members, neighbors, and caregivers:
- Know what medications your loved one is taking and see if you can help them have extra on hand.
- Monitor food and other medical supplies (oxygen, incontinence, dialysis, wound care) needed and create a back-up plan.
- Stock up on non-perishable food items to have on hand in your home to minimize trips to stores.
- If you care for a loved one living in a care facility, monitor the situation, ask about the health of the other residents frequently, and know the protocol if there is an outbreak.
H-E-B and Favor Delivery are launching a Senior Support Line, a new delivery program designed to offer a safer solution for older adults (60+) across Texas. Older adults can place orders from curated list of essentials by calling 1–833–397–0080, via the Favor app, or online at FavorDelivery.com. The phone line will be staffed with volunteers to accept/process home delivery orders via phone daily from 9:00 a.m to 1:00 p.m.
All fees will be waived for the first 30 days, with a $10 tip included in the order for the Favor Runner. More information here.
Reliable Online Resources:
AGE has identified the following entities as valid sources for disease control and prevention information:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Coronavirus Disease Information
World Health Organization: Basic Protective Measures Against the New Coronavirus
National Council on Aging: UPDATED: Coronavirus: What Older Adults Need to Know
AARP: What You Need to Know About the Coronavirus
Administration for Community Living: COVID-19
City of Austin: Frequently Asked Questions About Coronavirus Disease 2019
Precautions at The AGE Building and AGE Programs:
AGE of Central Texas has been closely monitoring the spread of COVID-19 and is following updates and guidelines from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, local and state health departments, and other governmental agencies. Additionally, our Executive Leadership Team is meeting daily to review the latest information on this rapidly changing situation and will respond accordingly.
AGE staff is working diligently to create virtual services to be offered to clients in an effort to help alleviate any negative effects for those self-selecting to stay home as an extra precaution. These services will be designed to keep older adults engaged, support caregivers, and prevent feelings of isolation.
We have created an online library, which will be updated daily, featuring dozens of activities, videos, virtual tours, webcams, and resources for older adults and family caregivers to enjoy while at home: Click Here for the AGE Resource Page
In addition, we are continually providing our staff with the latest and best information available, so they can protect not only the families that we serve, but also themselves and their families as well.
If you or a family member need assistance, please contact us at (512) 451-4611, or contact our Resource Center at (512) 600-9275.
With new confirmed cases being reported in all of the AGE service areas, and the Governor of Texas’ official declaration of a statewide health disaster yesterday, we are making the following adjustments to our programs and services:
- Our team continues to provide one-on-one assistance and navigation to resources via email – ResourceCenter@AGEofCentralTX.org – and telephone: 512-600-9275.
- Staff have also created virtual support groups – email ResourceCenter@AGEofCentralTX.org for more information.
THRIVE SOCIAL & WELLNESS CENTERS:
- Staff are creating weekly activities to keep our members engaged while they “Stay Home, Stay Safe.”
- Staff are contacting members regularly throughout the week via telephone to touch base and keep our members engaged.
- We are providing meals to pick-up for our members who are in danger of becoming food insecure.
MEMORY CONNECTIONS early memory loss support program:
- Program staff are contacting members electronically and via telephone to touch base weekly.
- Staff are also creating virtual activities to keep members engaged and active.
ALL OTHER PROGRAMS:
- All non-essential staff are working from home.
- All group meetings are being conducted via teleconferencing.
- All volunteer opportunities and vendor activities are canceled until further notice.
THE AGE BUILDING:
- The Building is closed to the public.
- All outside support group meetings are canceled until further notice.
- Sanitation of commonly used areas will occur daily.
All upcoming AGE events for April and May – including the 26th annual AGE Awards, Pflugerville Seniors Conference, and April caregiver seminar – have been postponed until later in the year.
In addition, the CaregiverU and AGE Computer Lab classes have been suspended until further notice.
We will continue to evaluate the community situation as it evolves, and will adjust our response as needed.
AGE of Central Texas will continue to provide services no matter any losses in revenue — which we expect to occur during the next weeks or months as program participants self-select to stay home. Despite the financial impact, AGE is committed to serving all of Central Texas, and ensuring that we are helping all that need us.
We are more grateful than ever for our supporters who are committed to working alongside us to make sure AGE is still in a position to sustain and provide services to help the most vulnerable population in our country right now.
You can continue to show your support for AGE by clicking here.