My 95 year old mama has had home health nurse and physical therapy prior to COVID19. She has issues with knee and now wrist plus is in bed watching tv most of the day. Has always been active so wanted to get her moving again. What are the guidelines for home health workers as far as safety with clients? When I asked they said "mask and gloves". Both showed up extremely casually dressed with only "basic type" mask. No hand sanitizer. On the next visit I will have a bottle of sanitizer next to her. Is there a standard? What have others experienced. I am concerned about exposure with two different therapist and a nurse coming each week.

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Hello, Pamzimmrt:
I tried to offer some advise regarding your mother but see your frustration. AARP has good caregiving resources for ideas. Sorry that we are entirely unprepared for this health crisis. It's a very no-win situation, but I hope the best for your mom.
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pamzimmrrt May 2020
Pat we are good,, thank you! I am front line at a major big city hospital, one of the top in the nation.. so we are pretty prepared in my house! I was trying to help the OP Holdingon 70! Just giving her my advise based on past experience and what is going at my hospital. Supplies are hard to come by! Moms PT and home Rns were a few months ago.. now we just have to watch her falls.. ( my hubs jokes that her favorite season these days is FALL! ) Things are looking up in my area.. less than 100 pts in my 1500 bed hospital are positive, and less than 50 are on vents. We are reopened for surgery and things are looking positive, thank God. And in my area of MD things are looking better, almost all of our deaths are in NHs.. that is why I am concerned about her Mom being 95. Age is a big predictor in this mess, And I love the stuff from AARP,, better than the CDC these days!
What do you mean by a "basic type" mask? The home made kind the CDC says is fine, or the hospital surgical type ( paper) we get to use for weeks at the hospital? If you expect a N95 type,, just be aware they are super tight and hard to talk with while they are on. I am not being smart arssed.. my point is that no one is sure what really works these days. And N95s are still hard to get even in the hospitals,, so I am sure your home care people are in the same bind! At 95 she is at risk just because of her age.. so I guess your real dilemma is how much you are willing to trade off for more care for her? And what does "extremely casually dressed" mean? Our PT always wore street clothes, the RNs/etc wore scrubs.. but in a home care setting it would be impossible for them to go home between clients and shower and change. It would be great if you could provide gloves and hand sanitizer,, we are having trouble finding them too! Good luck with this,, I would hope they would be fine,, but if you are really worried you may be able to ask for print outs of the exercizes and do them with her your self?
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Holdingon70 May 2020
Guess I was vague. By basic I meant paper that looked flimsy and was illfitting. Guess age she is showing...she had on those jeans that are all ripped. Lol Yes at 95 she is definitely at risk. I am 69 with MS so at high risk as well. She also hear voices. They are not menacing just frustrating which adds to confusing. Guess it's gloves and sanitized with a smile. And an abundance of caution and common sense.
Thanks all.
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Something else.

I had (unfortunately) to go to the dentist today for an emergency and LOVED their protocol, I'm sharing it with you, what impressed me the most was that the whole protocol was prompted without talking, just smiles, naming the things one after the other and making me go through it without the possibility to question it!
The whole thing lasted less than a minute, I just didn't have the time to say a word!

1. Assistent opens the door, says hi, smiles with her eyes behind the mask and gives me some shoe covers pointing at my feet
2 Then says "Your gloves please" with something resembling joy
3. Cheerfully disposes of my gloves
4. Points me towards hands sanitizer, always smiling
5. Hands me a new pair of gloves, keeping smiling
6. Hands me a medical hair cover * smiles*
7. Hands me a medical apron and helps me tying it

40 seconds and I was made innocuos.
It really worked!
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These are the best guidelines I found so far:

I hope they can help you
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COVID-19 is dangerous and makes no exceptions!!!! Wash your hands before touching your face, using the 6-foot social distance.
Have extra masks, nitrile gloves and sanitizers at your door. All visitors must use their own thermometers daily to check temperatures before entering your Mamas place. So Sorry. Those who do not pass must be sent home and call their doctors.
Helpful Answer (1)
pamzimmrrt May 2020
Pat you have good advice, but I am not sure how the home Rn and PT can keep a 6 foot distance and still do their jobs? The RN has to do BP, listen to lungs and heart, check ankles for swelling, etc. And all Moms PTs had to touch her to make sure she was safe and balanced, and doing her hand exercizes correctly. I think it is lovely to have extra masks and gloves available,, if you can find them. Many of us cannot at this time! But everyone does the availability to offer hand washing. Thank you!
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