We know our community is concerned about COVID-19 (Coronavirus) especially the impact on vulnerable populations like older adults. More than 30,000 older adult calls Arlington home and older adults are at higher risk for this virus.
Arlington County is working closely with the various County programs that serve older adults and directly with the Department of Human Services, Aging and Disability Services and the Agency on Aging to ensure essential needs are addressed and minimize disruption to services. Be assured that Arlington County and Aging and Disability Services are closely monitoring the situation through our local Arlington Public Health and committed to delivering core services while also preparing to adjust our processes as needed.
We are encouraging our older adults to remain at home, avoid public gathering and practice safe, social distancing (3-6 feet between people). If possible, rather than visiting community locations and offices, utilize phone and electronic communications as much as possible. Older adults should follow the guidance and suggestions from the Virginia Department of Health and the CDC specifically:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Avoid touching your facial areas (eyes, nose, and mouth) as much as possible.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
- Stay home when you are sick and especially if you currently have a fever or have had a fever or symptoms of any illness in the last 24 hours.
- Limit visitors to your home, especially those who have been traveling or are sick.
We encourage all members of the community, especially our older adults, to avoid crowded places and social gatherings and limit outings to non-peak times, like early in the morning or later in the evening. Make plans for your own personal preparedness. Excellent general emergency preparedness guidance per Arlington County is available here. In addition, consider the following steps:
- Create or update your emergency contact list. Include your doctors, family members, and any other important contacts.
- Refill your prescription medications to ensure you have enough for 30 days.
- Restock any nonprescription drugs and other health supplies, including pain relievers, stomach remedies, cough and cold medicines, fluids with electrolytes, and vitamins.
In addition, for those who are able, please check in on your family members, friends and neighbors who are older and may be at higher risk, at home and advised to avoid crowds. If you are able and healthy you may want to:
- Offer to pick up medications, groceries, pet food and other necessities to ensure one to two weeks of food and other essentials
- Check in with neighbors to see how they are doing and ask if they need anything
- If someone becomes ill, encourage them to contact their medical provider
The Department of Human Services strives to strengthen, protect and empower all whom we serve, which often includes the most vulnerable in our community. We encourage everyone to stay informed.
- Visit the County COVID-19 (Coronavirus) website.
- Call the Virginia Department of Health Public Information line: 1-877-ASK-VDH3