LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - It’s been about three months since the COVID-19 pandemic began, forcing the quarantine of the elderly and those most at risk. These measures require them to avoid direct contact with others, at a time when contact can be critical for mental and emotional health.
Lubbock’s Adult Protective Services says this isolation is particularly difficult for the elderly population.
Crystal Ysasaga with Texas Adult Protective Services (APS) says they’ve had to make changes in how they respond to their clients, but they’re all working together to make sure that each person is taken care of.
“We’re not allowed to go out to see the clients face to face so it’s kind of hard,” Ysasaga said. “We always try to make them feel that they’re not alone, or, we’re still aware of their situation and try to help them out as much as possible.”
Ysasaga is an APS specialist and an in-home worker. She said they've seen an increase in the number of individuals needing help since the pandemic started.
“I just feel that a lot of the cases are due to the isolation,” Ysasaga said. “They’re not getting that one on one time with somebody that used to come out every day.”
Ysasaga said anyone needing help is encouraged to call APS. They’re able to refer clients to the resources they need, whether it be getting help paying a bill, securing food, or something else. Ysasaga said they also work to provide counseling services.
APS said the Llano Estacado Silver Star Board was awarded a $3,000 grant by the Community Foundation of Texas to help fund APS’s Silver Star Room. The room stays stocked with everyday necessities like food, clothes, blankets, hygiene products, and more.
The group also received a $5,000 COVID grant sponsored by United Way and Community Foundation of West Texas.
Ysasaga says they can also provide help with air conditioners if anyone needs help with installation. The can also help clients get their medication.
Ysasaga encourages anyone with elderly friends, loved ones or neighbors to reach out and check on them.
Anyone who needs help should contact APS. You can call them toll-free at 800-252-5400 or dial 211.