Elder Care in Times of Crisis

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Whether it’s a pandemic, a raging fire or floods, during times of crisis tribal elders are the most vulnerable population. Providing for their needs is among a tribe’s most pressing and sacred duties. In this 4-hour session, we’ll discuss ways tribal communities can anticipate and respond to elder needs. We’ll talk about safely reaching elders with needed medical care and supplies, how to reach elders with important information, and how to create a crisis response plan that takes the elderly population into account.

T O P I C S   I N C L U D E
What is Happening in Indian Country with the Covid-19 Pandemic Crisis
  • Take a look at the National Map of Covid-19 incidence and mortality in Indian Country
  • Review what other tribes are doing to combat the virus and provide for the health of their members
  • Identify resources in Indian Country available to tribal members
  • Review IHS Response to Covid-19
  • Review NIHB Response to Covid-19
Planning for Elder Care in Your Community During a Pandemic or Crisis
  • Identify the need for services:
    • Who are the elders in your community?
    • What are their needs?
    • Identify age, health, place of residence, living conditions, transportation, food security, etc.
  • What services are already in place?:
    • Elders programs
    • Nutrition and meal sites
    • Diabetes programs
    • CHRs
    • IHS, other clinics, contract care
Methods for Locating and Addressing Gaps in Service
  • Determining who is doing what:
    • Find out if a Covid-19 Response Team exists and join or establish one
    • Survey all resources available for elder population and identify the gaps
    • Develop partnerships within and outside the community
  • Modify current programs and services to meet needs of shelter in place needs
Responding to COVID-19
  • Shelter in place and how it impacts the elderly - all elders and AIAN elders
  • Preparing caregivers to gather and communicate medical data:
    • Include training on use of PPE, information about Covid-19 screening, contact tracing, and facts about Covid-19 to help them talk to their elders
  • Overcoming isolation:
    • Inventory mental health services available
    • Inventory religious and cultural resources
    • Establish a link for the elders to access care
  • Establish a contact list to make regular contact with elders:
    • When possible, build communication link with other family members to support their elders

*Topics subject to change.

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