Prayer #176: For Nursing Home Residents
The COVID-19 outbreak, and the restrictions that followed, has been extremely hard on the residents of nursing homes. Even though only a tiny fraction of our population resides in nursing homes, deaths in nursing homes have accounted for about 40% of the COVID-19 deaths in the United States. Exacerbating the danger from the virus due to the susceptibility of the elderly to COVID infection is the fact that they have been isolated from family and other caregivers during this time of restriction. Prior to the lockdown, these loved ones have provided social and mental stimulation, which, doctors have long noted, play a critical role in slowing down dementia. Physicians are now reporting increased backsliding with dementia patients who have been stable for years. "Families fill in a lot of gaps at nursing homes," Dr. Jason Karlawish, an Alzheimer's specialist at the University of Pennsylvania recently stated. "They do much of the feeding and bathing. They advocate and communicate. If you think of Alzheimer's as a disability, family members are almost like a cognitive wheelchair for patients who have lost part of their mind. They're essential." The Centers for Disease Control has just reported that more than 134,200 have passed away from diseases like Alzheimer's since the onset of the pandemic, a marked increase.
Pray for God watchful care for residents of nursing homes across the nation. Pray for the staff at these facilities, who, in the absence of visit from family and friends of patients, are having to try to provide the support that is sorely missing. Pray too for the families and loved ones of nursing home patients as they struggle in pain and frustration over not being able to go on visits.
Ps. 89:13: "You have a mighty arm; strong is Your hand, high Your right hand."