ALONE encourage older people to remain calm and take preventative health measures as COVID-19 is confirmed in Ireland
2nd March 2020 ALONE is urging older people to take extra
care and observe guidelines from the HSE and Health Protection Surveillance
Centre (HPSC) following the announcement of a case of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in
the east of Ireland. Older people may be more vulnerable to viruses such as
COVID-19, due to compromised or weakened immune systems or pre-existing health
issues. ALONE is advising older people to remain calm and follow the relevant preventative measures to stay well in order to reduce their risk of contracting the virus.
Seán Moynihan, CEO
of ALONE commented, “We advise
that older people remain calm yet vigilant until the threat of coronavirus
subsides. Viruses such as these often pose more of a threat to older people,
who may have compromised immune systems or pre-existing health conditions. 45% of the people who use ALONE’s services
are over the age of 80, and understandably outbreaks such as this can be very
worrying. Over the next few days, ALONE’s services will be reaching out to older
people in the community who may be vulnerable or concerned, to offer them the
support and advice that they need. We are also reaching out to the HSE to
coordinate our response.”
ALONE advises that
older people practice the following precautions to reduce the general risk of
acute respiratory infections while out and about:
Wash hands regularly, especially after direct contact with ill
people or their environment.
Avoid close contact with people suffering from acute respiratory
infections or other illnesses.
Individuals with symptoms of acute respiratory infection should
practice cough etiquette (maintain distance, cover coughs and sneezes with
disposable tissues or clothing, and wash hands).
Moynihan continued, “It is important that older people follow all HSE
guidelines and take all preventative measures as recommended; wash your hands
regularly and use alcohol based hand sanitizer to prevent the spread of
bacteria. It is also important that individuals of all ages, though they may
not be among vulnerable groups themselves, remember to be conscious of their
potential to spread Coronavirus and other winter illnesses, and to take similar
person concerned that they may have symptoms of Coronavirus should immediately
isolate themselves from others and contact their GP by phone. ALONE is advising
older people who are concerned about their own wellbeing to be mindful of good
hygiene practices, to contact their local GP or healthcare provider by
telephone and to ask for assistance and help if needed.
ALONE 0818 222 024 if you have
concerns about your own wellbeing, or the wellbeing of a vulnerable older
person in the community. Further information, including advice and tips for
older people in extreme weather conditions, can be found on www.alone.ie.
Additional information can be found via
the following links