OLEAN — At Total Senior Care the health and safety of participants continues to remain a priority and staff is working harder than ever to advocate for what the participants need the most during this time.

Due to limited capacity at the Total Senior Care Day Center, some daily activities for participants have gone virtual for those at home, with staff creating a private Facebook group for daily live videos.

“The day center attendance is very limited so trying to make an impact while most of the participants are home is challenging. We have activities online and we still have the availability of packets for those who are not attending,” said Monica Meerdink, Total Senior Care activities coordinator. “In the day center itself, we have to make sure everyone is spaced 6 feet apart and there is no sharing of materials, so we have had to think ‘outside the box’ sometimes to creatively find ways to do activities we know they enjoy. “

The Total Senior Care clinic has remained open during COVID-19 and clinic staff has been readily available to those that need services. This clinic is located in the Total Senior Care Center, giving participants immediate access to a nurse practitioner and nursing staff.

“I think having a support system and someone to call if they need anything has been a big difference for participants. They have a 24/7 nurse and I think it’s a comfort to a lot of them,” said Kristine Graham, registered nurse in the clinic.

Throughout the past several months, staff have noticed the impact COVID-19 has had on their jobs.

“It’s impacted our ability to see patients and continue our regular caseload. Instead of spending most of the day with our participants, we now spend that time on the phone checking on them,” said Gina Russell, physical therapist at Total Senior Care.

Services such as physical and occupational therapy have also remained available for participants.

“The participants know that they now have an entire team of professionals that are committed to improve their quality of life by keeping them safer, healthier and connected to their peers,” said Russell.

Despite changes, enrollment at Total Senior Care has not slowed down and a lot has been done remotely. Referrals are still being taken and information is shared via phone calls, email or mail when possible.

“Many families are now looking for services to keep their loved ones at home and we have seen increased inquiries for Total Senior Care services as a result,” said Ink Young, director of organizational advancement at HomeCare & Hospice and Total Senior Care in Olean.

“The program provides a unique opportunity for families to know that their loved one’s safety and well-being is being taken care of by a team of dedicated individuals and we are seeing improvement in health of Total Senior Care program participants as they are able to remain home and still receive the services that they need,” Young said.

For more information on services provided by Total Senior Care or to schedule a free tour, please visit totalseniorcare.org or call (716) 379-8474. Those interested can enroll at any time.

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