ACTIVITIES AT THE FIELDS
The days of large groups of residents and families being entertained by musicians, dancers, performers of every age and talent are gone.
Group size limits, tables and chairs arrangements, who from the outside can come in and such things that never needed a second thought are now the stuff of government guidance and Governor’s executive orders.
Then, there’s my favorite:
C0MMON SENSE GERIATRICS WITH A SENSE OF HUMOR AND ENDLESS, ENHANCED UNIVERSAL PRECAUTIONS.
Some good literature is emerging in the social psychology and sociology journals proposing that the isolation, loneliness and confusion among all elders in long-term care have negative health consequences of their own, beyond the disease syndromes caused directly by the virus.
The Fields philosophies, borrowed from several health disciplines and collected under the mantel of therapeutic communities, were developed based on certain expectations. We’re meeting regularly to upgrade, modify and re-apply the principles to the new conditions.
The fundamental things still apply: upper and lower body exercise, gait and balance stability, flexibility and mobility. Also, preservation of cognitive functions and mental/cognitive stimulation to slow the rate of decline from brain diseases like Alzheimer’s and related disorders.
Some providers claim to have interventions that treat and reverse cognitive loss. They don’t.
We know how brains and minds work and what illness, disease and old age do to people. We slow down deterioration, avoid unnecessary problems and preserve physical, mental and emotional qualities of life.
The Fields care for individuals in a traditional provider-patient relationship. We add the power of the community, the social interactions and the uplifting spirituality of the group experience to offset the previous challenges of infirmity and now the additional consequences of the long-term care restrictions.