Seniors Without Family or Friends Lag in Vaccine Rate

Knowing that they couldn’t navigate the vaccine registration systems on their own, Quigley spent hours online trying to get appointments for his parents.

After encountering a host of issues – frequent error messages, information she entered suddenly erased from vaccine registration sites, calendars with appointments disappearing every second, incorrect notices that her parents did not qualify – Quigley arranged for his mother to be vaccinated in mid-January and for his father to receive his first vaccine a few weeks later.

Language issues are also a major barrier for older Hispanics, who “aren’t offered vaccine information in a way they understand or in Spanish,” said Yanira Cruz, president and chief of staff. the leadership of the Hispanic National Council on Aging.

“I am very concerned that elderly people who are not fluent in English, who do not have a family member to help them navigate online and who do not have access to private transportation be left behind. aside ”during this deployment, she said.

None of the seniors living in two social housing complexes run by his organization in Washington, DC and Garden City, Kansas have received a vaccine, Cruz said. “We should bring the vaccines to where the elderly live, not ask them to take a bus, expose themselves to other people and try to find their way to a clinic,” she says.

Nothing can replace a friend or family member committed to ensuring that an older loved one is protected from covid. Joanna Stolove played the role for her father, 82, who is blind and has congestive heart failure, and her mother, 74, who has Lewy body dementia.

The couple live in Nassau County on New York’s Long Island and receive 40 hours of home care each week.

Stolove, a geriatric social worker, took time out during labor to try and get a date with her dad, but a lot of people don’t have that luxury. She works in a natural retreat community in Morningside Heights, a diverse neighborhood on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

With substantial effort, Stolove secured an appointment for his father at a large drive-thru vaccination site in Jones Beach on January 26; her sister found a meeting there for her mother at the end of February. At work, where many of her clients live alone and have no family or friends they can count on for help, she advises them on vaccines and tries to find appointments. you on their behalf.

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Jothi Venkat

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