Created: March 30, 2020 06:28 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.—A nonprofit advocacy group for New Mexico seniors is stepping up to ensure that residents who live in nursing homes and assisted living facilities can still connect with their friends and families.
State officials implemented visitation restrictions on nursing homes and other hospice facilities earlier this month in order to prevent the spread of COVID-19
"They are very used to that normal interaction, day-to-day interaction with each other and that can have a real negative impact on both parties and especially the residents who ultimately we're here to care for,” said Vincente Vargas, executive director of New Mexico Health Care Association and New Mexico Center for Assisted Living.
The New Mexico Health Care Association donated 75 electronic tablets to different facilities across the state to make social distancing a little easier.
"We were talking to facilities about our initiative and immediately they were telling us of the need for this type of communication device because in the meantime, you had some facilities—they were using any residents that might have a phone already, were sharing that phone amongst themselves with other residents and staff were assisting as well with their communication devices,” Vargas said.
Vargas said the association wants to have at least one tablet in each nursing and assisted living facility. Their goal is to give out 75 additional tablets.
“You know, one tablet is nice but it isn't always adequate for some of these big facilities and so if we could get a second one in there I think this would go a long way to help facilitate in this effort,” he said.
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