COVID cases on the rise lead to concerns amongst senior citizens groups in the Upper Cumberland.
Putnam County Senior Center Director Maxine Frasier said that such concerns have led to the temporary cancellation of their volleyball class. Because it’s an activity with closer contact and less ability to wear masks, Frasier said that the decision came from a desire to protect her community.
“We just want to put those people first,” Frasier said. “I mean we are the most vulnerable group. I don’t want to lose a single person. We’ve already lost too many people, and if we can be a little extra careful for a short period of time and then all be here to go back to full-speed, that’s the goal.”
Frasier said that other activities are more easily monitored. She said that they will continue to monitor the situation and make any changes necessary. DeKalb County’s Alexandria Senior Citizen Center is taking a similar approach.
Director Sandy Brown said that while they haven’t had to cancel any activities yet, they’re continuing to use extra precautions. Brown said they currently screen every person who enters the building and sanitize everything from doorknobs to playing cards in between use.
“We are having a discussion about it,” Brown. “But you have to keep in mind when we reopened back in September, we had to put in place a lot of protocols to keep people safe anyways. We’ve never really been out of the woods with COVID.”
Brown said that so far their center has been continuing activities. She said they’ve been working to address both the physical and mental needs of their community.
“We’ve been trying to balance both the health issues that come from isolation and depression with the very real dangers of COVID,” Brown said. “It’s kind of a fine line that we’re walking here. We don’t want to tell people to stay home, stay alone, because that gets too difficult. In our particular demographic we don’t have enough that are having access to the internet where I can use Facebook to keep in touch with people. We do have a following on Facebook but it’s not our regular core people. Those folks are not online and they’re not getting anything from that. Like I said, we’re taking it day-by-day and watching the numbers.”