It’s great to see the Administration for Community Living and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health recognize the importance of connectivity during these days of social distancing and quarantining.
Social disconnection has enormous health consequences. Social isolation has been found to be as harmful to a person’s health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day, and people who are socially isolated or lonely face higher risk of hospitalization; depression, anxiety and suicide; heart failure and stroke; dementia; and even premature death. Not surprisingly, a recent analysis found that Medicare spends an additional $6.7 billion every year on enrollees who are socially isolated.
“We need a multipronged public health approach to change the way we address social isolation, especially among our most at-risk populations,” said U.S. Surgeon General, VADM Jerome M. Adams, M.D., M.P.H. “This approach must include the development of innovative solutions to combat the harmful physical and mental health effects of social isolation and the role technology has in promoting better connections for all.”
Keeping seniors safe from COVID-19 is big priority, but it is also important to help alleviate some of the feelings of loneliness and depressing that can creep in as a result.
At NOTIFY Communications, we believe deeply in the importance of communications and connectivity and our technology goes a long way to keep residents engaged with caretakers and loved ones.