How can I protect myself?

Our Chief Nursing Officer, Olivia Rogers, answers questions from patients and their families.

Dear Olivia,

It is so concerning to watch the news each day and the unknown of viruses such as COVID-19. I am a healthy senior living at home, and I have a difficult time knowing how best to protect myself. Can you help?

~How can I protect myself?

Dear How can I protect myself,

Here at VNA, we have the honor and privilege of caring for seniors throughout North Texas. We know the critical importance of preparation and remaining calm in times like this. Much is being learned about this newly emerged virus. Based on the current information, health officials are recommending we take common-sense precautions to protect against coronavirus COVID-19 as we take to prevent the spread of everyday illnesses like the common cold or the flu: wash hands, avoid touching the face, avoid close contact with people who are sick, clean objects and hard surfaces. For those 60 and older, the CDC is recommending extra precautions, including avoiding crowds and nonessential travel.

For older adults and those with serious chronic medical conditions, like heart disease, diabetes and lung disease, there are additional precautions you can take to protect yourself and loved ones. The CDC recommends contacting your health care provider to ask about obtaining extra necessary medications to have on hand in case you need to stay at home for a prolonged period. You can also consider using a mail-order pharmacy for medications. Be sure to have over-the-counter medicines on hand to treat fever and other symptoms as well as enough groceries in case you are home for an extended period.

Most importantly, practice good hygiene, stay calm and stay informed from reliable sources, like Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO). Visit for the latest information. Contact your physician if you have questions or begin to experience symptoms of a respiratory infection or fever. VNA is implementing a robust emergency preparedness plan to help us safely care for seniors in our community—visit for information and resources.