I am so distraught about this covid19 crap. I was going to volunteer at a local retirement home now that is out of the question. I miss going to church and seeing my 84 y/o mother. She lives in a retirement home. Anyone else feeling this way?
I think we all are.
Yeah. Me too. I’m not one for all of this isolation either.
Oh yes! No senior lunch,Y , or church . Miss my old life. But am trying to keep busy in my garden , on line groups, visiting our grand kids 1 more time before school starts. We are meeting outside with masks, no hugs. I am lucky my husband is a great guy to be with. As far as diabetes,I will see in 2 weeks when I see my CDE. Nancy50
Absolutely! I never thought I would miss my train commute and going into the office so much. I’m so fortunate that I can work from home, but it’s isolating.
I miss seeing people in person, going out to restaurants in the city, and many others things. I feel like my existence has shrunk.
@Dee_Meloche A lot of people are really frustrated about their parent(s) in retirement homes and not seeing them. Not even knowing if they are really okay when you can’t see them face to face.
I suggest you do something innovative, a bunch of people here have. A family holding holding up signs outside where they can see it, or just you holding up a sign where they can see it. Sitting with them outside a window. Doing a zoom call, skype, snapchat, houseparty. If your mom doesn’t have a computer you can pick up a pretty cheap one and people have dropped them off to give to their parent and the staff has helped them sign on. Check with the retirement home first of course.
It’s not the same I know. But anything to stay a little more connected might help.
I am tired of it too. What bothers me most was the lack of action taken when the Chinese shut down at New Years. My husband and I knew it was serious. That’s like shutting down here over Thanksgiving and Christmas. Migrant workers in China only go home twice a year. We are over 70. We are supposed to be in Norway this week, but of course they are not letting us in and I don’t want to fly anyway. There are people out there who are a lot worse off than my husband and I are, parents trying to decide about their kids school, unemployment and losing health care, having food to eat.
Most nursing homes have a plan to use Ipad for the residents to talk with relatives and friends. Call and ask them about that option.
We have been able to visit my mother in law outside in the back yard ay 6 feet so we could sit at a long table and have a meal. At her nursing home that is.
I am feeling it - grandchildren and church where did you go.
Desperately miss singing in choir the most.
@Dee_Meloche, you are not alone. I just saw this article about “No-Visitor Policies Are Bad Medicine” in a healthcare feed. If you need the citation for the article, it is the last line.
No-Visitor Policies Are Bad Medicine
John L. Marshall, MD
August 24, 2020
Find the latest COVID-19 news and guidance in Medscape’s Coronavirus Resource Center.
This transcript has been edited for clarity.
This is John Marshall for Medscape. I’ve been thinking a lot about the impact of COVID-19 on our division, our patients, our processes, and our cancer care.
Cancer care is not elective; it has to keep going. One of the worst policies for our patients right now is this no-visitor policy. You are coming for a treatment, a clinic visit, or, worse yet, admitted to the hospital for end-of-life care or for some complex medical procedure related to your cancer, and yet you can’t have a caregiver, an advocate, sitting next to you in your room.
As much as we say they may irritate us, we all rely on them. They don’t irritate us. They help quarterback and navigate us as we see our patients. They help us coordinate care and they help us understand what that patient’s life is really like. Sure, technology bridges that to some degree, but it’s just not the same. We all know that.
As a consequence, I think the quality of our care is falling a bit because no caregivers are around. I’ve been watching patients make really interesting decisions. Nowadays it’s not uncommon for somebody to say, “I’m not going to go to the hospital to see what is wrong. I’m going to sit at home. I don’t want to go in there and be lonely, even if it means my life will be shorter. I’m not going to take another round of fourth-line therapy for metastatic disease because I don’t want to risk ending up in a hospital by myself, particularly at end of life.” [I think we are doing] hospice sooner rather than trying to extend people’s lives with some intervention or “Band-Aid.”
Because of the terribleness of being by yourself in the hospital — maybe the loneliest place on Earth — patients are making different medical decisions.
I also wonder how much of this is going to stick around when we loosen up. In Washington, DC, we have started to do some elective procedures and fill back up within the hospital. Maybe soon we will start to allow visitors and caregivers physically back into the hospital. I wonder if we will slip back to where we were before or if we will reflect on this and incorporate more heavily the importance of being at home with family.
This loneliest place on Earth that we have created in our hospitals is teaching us all a lesson for the future. Just a thought as COVID-19 continues to wreck our days. John Marshall for WebMD/Medscape.
John L. Marshall, MD, is a leader in the research and development of drugs for colon cancer and other gastrointestinal cancers, and he has been the principal investigator of more than 150 clinical trials. Marshall is the founding director of the Otto J. Ruesch Center for the Cure of Gastrointestinal Cancer, chief of the Division of Hematology-Oncology at Georgetown University, and the clinical director of oncology for Georgetown University Hospital.
Follow Medscape on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube
Medscape Oncology © 2020 WebMD, LLC
Any views expressed above are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the views of WebMD or Medscape.
Cite this: John L. Marshall. No-Visitor Policies Are Bad Medicine - Medscape - Aug 24, 2020.
Our churches are open, at 40 percent capacity. But if you like that sort of thing, many are online these days. Ours was never online before but is now for those who arent comfortable attending yet. Some are doing drive in church as well. the parent thing is hard. I hope you get to visit soon.
I am surprised about my missing even casual social connections like brief encounters at the coffee shop or grocery store. I am an introvert and can get by without much social contact so this realization does surprise me.
I’ve had to cancel two travel tours to Europe this year and miss the social opportunities that they represent. I also miss the face to face contact I would normally enjoy with my adult daughter. I moved to her city four years ago in order to enjoy more contact with her. I miss that contact.
We do text and use FaceTime but I find they’re qualitatively less satisfying than in-person meetings. In person conversational cues provide a richer context for me. The multi-person Zoom meetings I’ve engaged in with my siblings seem stilted and shallow. I usually just stay quiet in those encounters even when there’s something I’d like to add as entering the conversation seems awkward and follow-up is minimal as the group just skips from one brief topic to another. I much prefer the one-on-one old-fashioned telephone conversation.
I hope you understand, @Dee_Meloche, that you are not alone in this cultural Twilight Zone that we find ourselves.
@Terry4 If you miss one and one conversations, then start calling them once a week. I’m sure they won’t mind it! My husband keeps in touch with his mother by calling her. She doesn’t seem to like staying on the phone long, but she enjoys the calls. She has learned to communicate a lot by e-mails.
I stay on the phone with one of my sisters for hours when I call her.
6 more moths, Dee. We just gotta make it to Christmas.
I miss visiting with my sister. I have only seen her one time since January. We sat outside in her yard about ten feet apart. It was better than not seeing her at all.
Before COVID I became a teleworker because my work hours were reduced and then I was laid off due to a company merger. I found another job within a month but the work load never translated to a 40 hr work week. At best 8-21 hours per week. Because commuting in Chicagoland is pricey I transitioned teleworking. It is very isolating when your only human contact is via Skype & email. At 55 there are only so many part time jobs I can find. So my income was in the toilet but not my expenses.
So just before the pandemic hit I enrolled in a truck driving school. But before I completed it the school was shut down because of covid. I was able to go to a neighboring state to complete training and now my husband and I are on the road together. To stay healthy we do as much as we can on truck and limit our exposure to fuel stops, groceries, laundry & showers. We have a camp toilet on truck and I cook healthy meals at home to take on truck. We supplement it with occasional trips to Aldi.
My parents died in 2014 & 2016. We chose to remove my mom from a nursing home in 2014 because her care was subpar. We had a team effort to take care of my mom. I am so glad we removed her. If she had lived the nursing home she was in has had the highest covid infection rates in the city. She would likely not have survived it. Not acceptable.
Because of my work history I’ve not had the funds to visit my family that lives in TN, TX & VA. My sisters and I text daily. But we know not seeing each is a small sacrifice that will keep us healthy. My sister has experienced the birth of her first grandchild and she has not seen her and likely will not see her for a long time. Another sister’s husband was hospitalized for a non-COVID related illness and she refused to leave his side and made sure he and all others were properly kitted out in PPE and his room adequately cleaned. When in doubt she had her supply of items to do that.
But even though I move thru different states on a daily basis I very rarely interact with people and only in a mask and with lots of sanitizer. I don’t share pens and when required to do so at a pickup or delivery I follow their in house rules regarding covid.
My experience and life is still very uncertain but I’ve been able to hold on to my house and our cars are paid for. We are still eating well because I cook everything from scratch and I’d stored things in freezer because of my earlier job load.
BUT I HAVE TO KEEP LOOKING ON THE BRIGHT SIDE & realize that even though I am isolated in terms of work and activities it gives me an opportunity to try things that fit into this new paradigm. If I didn’t do this I would have to give in to madness and for me that’s not an option.
I also think about some of the sacrifices and hardships my parents had to live thru as cotton pickers and tenant farmers in the American south as well as the sacrifices Americans made during WW I & WW II. It helps me keep things in perspective.
It’s like my hubby and I could go to church but it is with less people, no singing, no shaking hands and acknowledging people. The singing and the music is the best part and it makes it more enriched. Not very good circumstances!!! Grrrr.
This is difficult on many levels. Many things to miss. Aggravation when neighbors are having no mask parties. During all this, I had invasive breast cancer. Every appt I was alone. No help in the hospital for surgery, no support, not even a hug to my son who drove me there. My friends left me special items during recovery. No visiting. Just lonely and emotionally a struggle. Of course, there are Phone conversations. We all can get through this if we do what is necessary to stay healthy. Most the process is over, I am now dealing with the medicine. I am ok!