Medical Advisory Council Urges Caution as 29 States Reopen

As many states prepare to lift their shelter in place orders, members of the Medical Advisory Council advise caregivers to maintain their vigilance.

“The biggest concern that I have for clients and caregivers once states reopen is the increase in COVID cases that might occur and lack of proper ability to care for everyone,” said Barb Gellin, a member of the HCAOA Medical Advisory Council. “People will forget to still take precautions as Herd Immunity has not been obtained by the time states open. In the months to come, I think caregivers need to continue to take those same precautions seriously to avoid increase in COVID cases or at the very least another infectious round of COVID cases.”

“The issue of infectivity and transmission is going to continue for months, if not a couple of years,” said Dr. Steven C. Fox. “If the rest of the country lets their guard down, it doesn’t mean that our industry can.”

Twenty-nine states have begun or will soon begin partially reopening businesses deemed “nonessential” at the beginning of this crisis. With that, many family caregivers will be heading back to work, potentially revitalizing the demand for home care services. In March, home care agencies reported that they were seeing increased service cancellations due to contagion fears and family caregivers being forced to stay home.

“We’re expecting an increase in demand for services as clients are coming off of ‘being on hold’ due to the current COVID pandemic,” said Sheila Davis. “But also, if people do not continue to practice standard precautions and put their guards down, there will be an additional wave of people needing home care due to lack of available space in hospitals to treat minor cases.