City safeguards local seniors, children amid outbreak

Hu Min
Vulnerable populations are still receiving support and close monitoring to prevent the risk of infection, even as many services are temporarily halted.
Hu Min

Seniors and children in the city are being protected from the novel coronavirus outbreak by strict safety measures, Shanghai's civil affairs authorities told a press conference on Tuesday.

All visits to the city's senior care homes have been suspended, and workers are helping the elderly stay in contact with their family members and providing comfort to those in isolation, said Jiang Rui, deputy director of the Shanghai Civil Affairs Bureau.

More than 800 senior care agencies across Shanghai are required to report the number of returning seniors and workers each day, and activities at the city's senior centers have been halted to prevent gatherings, said Jiang.

Measures including temperature checks, disinfection and ventilation, and training on epidemic prevention have been conducted at local senior homes.

Closed management has been imposed on children's welfare institutions where the majority of residents are seriously ill or disabled kids.

All visits to children's welfare institutions in the city have been suspended, and offline rehabilitation training services provided by social service agencies have been halted as well to prevent cross infection, according to Jiang.

However, community-based senior services such as meal deliveries have been stepped up to help seniors with physical disabilities or financial difficulties get through the epidemic, she said.

A daily reporting mechanism targeting children in plight and children with absent guardians due to the epidemic has been established at local communities, and their support is guaranteed by authorities, she said. 

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