As COVID-19 rages, seniors continue to remain at-risk. According to CNN, seniors don’t always exhibit the typical symptoms associated with the illness. In fact, some seniors may become unusually lethargic, confused, and disoriented. Meanwhile, others may stop speaking and collapse without warning. If you have a senior at home, our post on geriatric diabetes and COVID-19 may shed light on the steps you can take to protect your loved one.
We’ll assume you already know the basics of frequent hand-washing and other hygiene measures. However, remember that seniors continue to remain at high risk of contracting COVID-19. In order to help you navigate these challenging times, our team at David York Agency shares important information below.
Diabetes and COVID-19 Among Seniors
According to Diabetes.org, seniors with diabetes aren’t more likely to contract COVID-19. However, they appear to have a higher chance of suffering from serious complications from COVID-19.
- The risk of serious complications appears to be lower if diabetes is well-managed.
- Diabetic seniors should take extra care with diet, exercise, and the monitoring of blood sugar levels during the COVID-19 crisis.
- Seniors with diabetes who contract COVID-19 face a higher risk of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), a serious condition that can lead to nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and shortness of breath.
If you have diabetes and believe you have contracted COVID-19, contact your doctor right away. Healthcare providers as well as the federal and state governments have put many measures in place to help.
How the CARES Act Helps Seniors with Diabetes and COVID-19
When President Trump signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (the bill that provided stimulus checks for Americans), he increased funding for Medicare healthcare providers, as well. Plainly put:
- The CARES Act allows healthcare professionals to submit bills to Medicare at a later date.
- This means your physicians and providers can focus more on caring for you today and less on paperwork.
- Prescriptions are now available as a 90-day supply rather than a 30-day supply.
- This results in significant savings for seniors who have multiple prescriptions to fill.
All seniors — and those with diabetes in particular — will save hundreds of dollars on prescription co-pays with a single co-pay for a 90-day supply. Your co-pay costs will be one-third of what they were before COVID-19. These savings can be meaningful, especially if you’re living on a fixed income. Additionally, it means fewer trips to the pharmacy to pick up prescriptions, which reduces your risk of contracting COVID-19.
If you need assistance to afford insulin, the ADA has information about programs that can help. For example, the Novo Nordisk Patient Assistance Program (PAP) provides insulin free of charge to eligible participants for 90 days. This means that Medicare patients will no longer have to pay $1,000 for medications before being eligible for PAP assistance.
More Help For Seniors With Diabetes in the Age of COVID-19
More than ever, caretakers must ensure that seniors have an adequate supply of insulin at hand. Be sure to familiarize yourself with best practices for safe insulin storage. Also, consider putting together a diabetes kit in case your loved one is hospitalized.
Above all, try to make staying home a positive experience for your loved one. Make delicious and healthy diabetes-friendly meals, encourage virtual social visits, and suggest fun ways to stay fit while social distancing.
David York Agency Understands the Challenges Seniors Face With Diabetes and COVID-19
David York Agency understands the challenges of caregiving and is willing to provide all the support you need.
- Keep feelings of loneliness and isolation at bay with scheduled phone calls and visits
- Help caregivers manage tasks like light housekeeping and grocery shopping
- Help diabetic seniors manage their blood sugar levels
- Assist with medication management
If you’d like more information about David York Agency’s qualified, compassionate caregivers, contact us at 718.376.7755. A free phone consultation can help you decide what services might be best. If you’d like to hear more from us, please like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn.
David York Agency Home Healthcare remains committed to providing personalized care for your loved one. If you have questions about our services, please contact us. We can help you through the difficult times and give you the break you deserve!