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VA Senior Living Community Protects Residents from Coronavirus; Equips Them to Connect with Loved Ones


As we've been reporting, the coronavirus affects the elderly and people with existing health problems on a much higher level than others. CBN News took a look at what's being done to protect older adults.

The coronavirus can lead to severe illnesses for elderly people, including pneumonia, and possibly death. That's why leaders at the faith-based senior living community, "Westminster-Canterbury on Chesapeake Bay", in Virginia Beach, Virginia, are taking no chances.

"Total lockdown, no visitors on any level of care, independent living, assisted living and nursing care, and it's simply to stop the virus from getting on campus," Ben Unkle, the CEO of Westminster-Canterbury, told CBN News.

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"If the virus comes on campus, as we've seen from Washington State and other senior living communities, it can be deadly," he continued.

With the campus being under lockdown, signs are posted, talking about coronavirus preventions. For example, one says, "...no outside visitors will be allowed entry to The Hoy Center at this time due to strict infection control prevention."

So besides a quick grocery drop-off, like one we witnessed between a daughter and her mother, how do those living here, communicate with loved ones on the outside?

Westminster-Canterbury had already developed video communication tools, known as Birdsong Tablets. Now, during this time of social distancing and isolation, the non-profit is offering it free of charge on all web browsers.

"So I'm just glad we have the technology, and it's just a no-brainer if you're the Church, what do you do? You serve," emphasized Unkle. "We have a tool that we can unleash that helps connect people easily to their families and helps distract and entertain them, educate them, take their mind off things."

"And so we're just gonna make it available free of charge on the web," he continued.

Resident Emily Harkins Filer enjoys using the tool to Skype with her grandson. "There you are. Hello!" she exclaimed in a conversation. 

"It's a feeling thing; you may not have noticed it, but I got a little tearful – just there he was... I miss him," she shared through tears.

Visit www.birdsongtablet.com to set up a free account.


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