What Are You Giving Your Residents for Christmas to Cheer Them Up During The Pandemic?

It better be good. Some seniors in your community may not be happy. Our research shows they are leaving. Delivering sweet treats to their doors periodically to placate them during the pandemic will help about as long as their elevated glucose levels. Our world and your marketplace dynamic have changed, you will need to be creative and reconsider how to effectively address the overall well-being and satisfaction of your seniors – and fast. Read on to find out 3 mistakes senior living communities are making when trying to help their residents now.

The National Center for Seniors Housing & Care announced that occupancy rates at senior housing properties across the U.S. declined to an all time low in the second quarter of 2020. Senior Housing News 2020

Your seniors are not experiencing the community they need and invested in

Their quarantine can be blamed on COVID-19, but they blame their boredom and isolation on you. Seniors are waking up to the reality that the community they paid for is not being provided. If your occupancy level has not dropped, it probably will, especially if you do not enable your seniors to easily connect, socialize, and be entertained virtually.

Pay attention to the mood of your care recipients. You might be able to recognize the warning signs.

Seniors move into communities to be entertained and to engage, not to be bored and isolated.  If your community does not deliver the lifestyle you promised, your seniors will go elsewhere.

In my experience, seniors don't need much in order to be happy. They just want a simple easy way to stay in touch with their friends, family, and fellow residents in their community. Access to some classic games like Chess, Solitaire, and Checkers is important. Older adults enjoy and need the cognitive challenge of crossword Puzzles, Sudoku, and word finding games. Curated content is best, since everyone has their own favorite games.

The tragic confining circumstances we are in now is pressing communities to come up with creative responses to the situation. Senior Living Communities have good intentions, but usually they are making the following three mistakes:

1. Endorsing inappropriate teleconferencing services

The typical free teleconferencing service is not designed with senior accessibility in mind. Imagine the frustration of trying to dial a string of 16 numbers when you have poor vision and mild cognitive impairment.

Yet this is how one major senior living community developer with over 30 properties up to recently operated. Is this the best we can do for the older adults in our care and for the families who are watching us; is this resident-centric service?

Get in touch with our Senior Living Specialist and learn how Oscar Senior can meet the needs of your community

2. Dressing your staff up like clowns

Childish public embarrassment of staff is no substitute for real entertainment. By the way, some of your staff probably feels a bit stupid doing this sort of stuff. Maintain your professional credibility by delivering content that entertains, informs, and enlightens. There are tools that may help you facilitate live entertainment again in your senior living community – safely.

There's no need to embarass your staff to entertain your residents. You may want to host a webinar or bring everyone together for an online breakfast.

3. Handing out a cheap, rented, tiny tablet to residents

Your residents know quality, that is why they decided to live in your senior living community. If you give your residents a dumbed down depersonalized communications device, you diminish your brand.

We partner with our senior care providers and systems integrators to provide an easy to deploy, customized, smart answer to your specific business and community needs. The Oscar Senior software platform is device agnostic and runs on many tablets that your residents may have already.

Pick up your early Christmas gift

We do have some good news. We have a gift for you and your residents because we know these past months haven’t been easy for either of you. Try our enterprise software for one month free during the holidays. We believe that Oscar Senior is a resident focused solution for real time enhanced connection between your residents, staff, caregivers and their families. So go ahead. Try it out for free. Delight your senior residents. Be their hero again.

Happy Holidays to you from the Oscar Senior team!

Brian Murphy has extensive experience in the elder care industry focusing on resident messaging and enrichment. He has over 10 years of technical experience implementing and troubleshooting communications solutions and has improved the operational efficiency of senior living communities.

He’s passionate about helping older adults (a segregated community) to stay healthy, both physically and psychologically so that’s why he’s so excited to work with Oscar Senior.

Brian and his wife keep a close eye on his mother-in-law who’s 91 now and successfully aging in place. She happily helps him when needed to test a feature of the Oscar Senior remote care platform.

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