Argentum, the leading national trade association serving companies that own, operate, and support professionally managed senior living communities, is calling on Congress to take swift action to ensure the safety and wellbeing of residents and staff of the communities as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
We urge our senators and congressmen to commit to providing these communities with the protective equipment, virus testing, and financial support they will need to continue providing care.
Seniors are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19 and their caregivers are working around the clock on the front lines to protect them and keep them out of the hospital. But they need more protective equipment and a lack of testing makes it challenging to stop the virus from spreading. It is critical for communities to be able to test residents and staff. How can NBA players get immediate testing, and senior living residents and workers cannot? They aren't able to see their loved ones and must spend all day in their room, unable to join others for dining or activities. As we look to return to normal, senior living should be prioritized for testing, PPE, and the resources they need to fight the virus and help the community get back to the place our seniors call home.
Restaurants, hotels, airlines, and Airbnb owners have received federal financial support, and they are not caring for the most important people in our lives. Senior living communities need your support to keep providing the exceptional care that is needed now more than ever.I urge you to consider the needs of our most vulnerable and precious- seniors and their caregivers by prioritizing our communities for PPE, testing and federal financial support.
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic presents unique challenges to the senior living industry, as individuals who are at the greatest risk from the virus include people aged over 60 years and those with underlying conditions. Timely access to testing is the most critical component to prevention and response, and we recommend that forthcoming legislative packages provide for adequate supplies to prevent, test for, and respond to any outbreaks, ensure regulations support the ability to care for residents, and that communities have the resources able to maintain operations throughout this pandemic and beyond.
While communities are taking preventive measures against the virus, there is no doubt that support is needed from the federal government to help keep our residents and team members safe. It is imperative that lawmakers hear not only from industry leaders, but from constituents who are most directly affected by this crisis and why Congress must prioritize senior living communities.
Please take a moment to send your federal legislators a note on the urgent need to prioritize senior living in the COVID-19 response.