The Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) today announced that a second Hoosier has died from COVID-19. The patient is a Johnson County adult over age 60 who had been hospitalized. No further information about the patient will be released due to privacy laws.
ISDH has received six new positive cases of COVID-19, bringing to 30 the number of Hoosiers diagnosed through ISDH, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and private laboratories. The new cases involve residents of Lake (2), Franklin (2) and Marion (2) counties and will be included on ISDH’s online dashboard at The full list of counties with cases is included in the dashboard, which will be updated daily at 10 a.m. Cases are listed by county of residence.
Today's News Feed
U .S. Tells Older Adults to Stay Home, All Ages to Avoid Crowds The White House on Monday issued guidelines and guidance for Americans to follow over the next 15 days to help slow the spread of the coronavirus, reports the Associated Press . President Trump urged all older Americans to stay home, while people of all ages should avoid crowds and eating out at restaurants. In seniors and people with existing health problems, the virus can cause severe illness, including pneumonia. To this end, Trump added, Americans also should not gather in groups of more than 10 people, schooling should be home-based, and discretionary travel and social visits should be avoided. Finally, if anyone in a household tests positive for the virus, every household member should stay home.

Coronavirus Is Changing the Way We Care for Frail Older Adults The coronavirus pandemic and the fast-tracked federal response is inverting long-standing rules and practices for caring for frail older Americans, reports Forbes . For one thing, a temporary ban on nursing home visits and group activities and communal dining effectively puts residents in quarantine, which will likely exacerbate their tedium and loneliness and make worse some of those seniors dealing with anxiety and depression. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's temporary waiver of Medicare's three-day rule for coverage at skilled nursing facilities for people infected by COVID-19 has made advocates hopeful that momentum for a permanent reversal of the regulation will build. Meanwhile, temporary closure of senior community centers and adult day programs in response to the pandemic is a serious blow to frail older men and women, increasing their vulnerability to social isolation and prevention of needed exercise or meals. This, in turn, raises pressures on family caregivers. On the positive side, the House-passed Families First Coronavirus Response Act allocates $250 million in extra funding for home-delivered meals through Senior Nutrition programs, benefiting low-income, home-bound, and disabled seniors and their caregivers. However, a shortfall of personal care aides is likely to worsen.
Dollar General Will Dedicate First Hour of Each Shopping Day to Seniors The Dollar General store chain announced plans to dedicate the first hour of each shopping day to seniors and change operating hours starting Tuesday to help avoid the spread of COVID-19, reports KKTV . All stores intend to close an hour earlier than current close times to let workers clean and re-stock store shelves, as well as for their health and wellbeing. Stores will continue to maintain the current opening schedule.

A Geriatrician Offers 4 Tips for Seniors to Stay Connected During Coronavirus Outbreak
University of Virginia professor and geriatrician Laurie Archbald-Pannone suggests four tips in The Conversation to help seniors remain connected during the coronavirus epidemic when advisories for social distancing are in effect. She first recommends that seniors take advantage of online communications technology like FaceTime, Zoom, Skype, or Snapchat. A second suggestion is remote participation in community activities, like volunteering to make phone calls for political parties, faith-based groups, and other organizations. Seniors also should stay current on the pandemic and other important news, but Archbald-Pannone thinks they should not do so to excess in order to avoid needless anxiety. "Watch a news update in the morning, then check in again at night," she advises. "Don't stay with it all evening -- 30 minutes or an hour is plenty." Archbald-Pannone's fourth suggestion is for seniors to stay in touch with close friends and family, especially those who also are practicing social distancing. "Social distancing does not mean social isolation, and even a potentially deadly virus should not force us to be alone," she writes. Read More