Caregiver COVID Tip Sheet

COVID-19 has created change for many of us. As a caregiver there are additional changes you are facing while keeping yourself and your loved one safe. Below are tips to help navigate the new normal as a caregiver.

Face Covering Tips

  • Allow your care partner to try several types of face coverings. Perhaps they prefer a certain type of fabric, ties vs elastic etc.
  • Get creative. Use a scarf or other item that can cover their face and may be more comfortable on their skin.
  • If your care partner is unable to wear a face covering, create a small card (business card) that explains the situation. For example, “The person I am with has memory issues. He/she is unable to continuously wear a face covering. I apologize for any inconvenience.” This will allow you to inform others of the situation while avoiding a lengthy conversation or upsetting your loved one.
  • Bring extra face coverings even if it is difficult for your care partner to wear one. Perhaps it can be worn for a short time while passing through a waiting room or other areas where social distancing is difficult for a brief time.

Medical Appointments

  • Ask questions! Advocate for yourself and your loved one. If you feel that an in-person or telehealth visit is necessary, and you are not presented with a choice, ask why and explain your concerns.
  • If telehealth options are available, confirm that they will be covered by your loved one’s insurance provider before the appointment.

Accepting Help in the Home

  • Ask the agency providing care about their COVID-19 policies.
  • If possible, have hand sanitizer or other disinfectant items available at your front door.
  • Ask anyone entering your home to wash their hands.

Long-Term Preparation

  • Create a backup plan. If a backup plan is already created, review it, and see if any changes need to be made due to COVID-19.
    • Possible changes to consider include, back-up caregivers being unable to travel, hospitals not allowing visitors, or family/friends having more availability due to changes in work/personal plans.
    • Include any COVID-19 precautions you expect back-up caregivers to take while caring for your loved one.

For additional support or questions, contact Springwell’s Family Caregiver Support Program at 617-926-4100.