Coronavirus & the elderly: Isolation takes a toll
Experts warn social distancing can take a major toll on the mental health of the elderly, but outreach programs can make a huge difference.
as the pandemic rages on sodas. Isolation for many seniors, a recent study from Johns Hopkins finds double the number of older Americans say they're experiencing psychological distress compared to 2018. Part of that is loneliness and can affect physical and mental health. There's a real impact on cognitive health thinking about memory loss, mental sharpness, ability to do advanced thinking as well as depression and anxiety. The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences is working to combat that social isolation with a program that matches D C area seniors and volunteers all medical students via phone. Well, they can connect collars with health services. The calls are meant to be conversational, not medical. I remember talking to one senior who said that something along the lines of those too good to be true that the service exists special connections that have been so successful the school plans to keep the program going post pandemic. We need to build more bridges across generations, right, and this is an opportunity to build bridges and give people a local grand parent. In Boston, outreach comes sealed and stamped. The Letters Against Isolation Campaign, started by two sisters, has sent more than 18,000 pieces of mail. Just so lovely tech have this community during these lonely times. Lines of communication helping older Americans combat social isolation and loneliness. Sarah Dahllof, NBC News.