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Alzheimer's organizations help families stay connected

Posted at 10:29 PM, Jun 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-04 00:29:37-04

MAGIC VALLEY — Alzheimer's organizations are helping families stay connected to their loved ones during a time when they cannot visit them. One organization here in Idaho is assisting families throughout this time with things they normally wouldn't do.

"We had a lady from California, and her aunt and her mother are living together. Her mom has Alzheimer's her aunt does not, but they chose to age together. At the beginning of the pandemic, they were concerned that they we're going to run out of toilet paper, so we went out got them toilet paper and left it on their front porch," Adrean Cavener, Executive Director of The Alzheimer's Association Greater Idaho Chapter, said.

The Alzheimer's Foundation of America moved all of its therapeutic programs online to make sure those with Alzheimer's still get the support they need.

"And what's important about that is, we want people to stay active. We want people to stay socially active. We want them to stay connected as best they can," said Charles J. Fuschillo Jr., President of The Alzheimer's Foundation of America.

The organization is encouraging families to stay connected with their loved ones as much as possible.

"We encourage them if they have an iPhone or their caregiver does. To do facetime, as we all do with our family and friends, stay connected even if it's a text message, a phone call, or an email. There are so many ways in this day and age that we can stay connected," Fuschillo said.

And Cavener says the isolation caused by the stay at home order has been especially hard for people with Alzheimer's to understand.

"You think it's hard for you and me to make this new normal make sense, it's really hard for people with Alzheimer's and dementia to make sense of this new world," Cavener said.