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CAREGIVERS

Talking to Clients About COVID-19

Robert Rakocy

May 1, 2020

cg-covid-convoIt’s hard to escape the reality of COVID-19 right now. In fact, it seems like every news report, commercial, podcast, and billboard reminds us of the pandemic. You aren’t the only one who can’t get away from coronavirus statistics and updates - your clients are overwhelmed with information too.

 

Your clients, no matter their abilities, will likely bring up COVID-19 at some point during your time together. Here are a few tips for addressing the topic without creating anxiety or confusion.

 

Don’t Be Afraid to Talk About It

 

It’s impossible to tiptoe around the coronavirus topic, especially if your client brings it up. Don’t be afraid to talk about it with your clients if they want to.  

 

Don’t Feel Like You Have to Sugar-Coat It

 

While speaking about COVID-19, don’t feel like you must sugar-coat the topic. This is a serious global pandemic, and your clients already know this. Trying to brush it off as “not that bad” can be disrespectful to those you serve.

 

Don’t Scare Your Client

 

While you don’t have to sugar-coat the reality of the situation, you also don’t have to give every bit of scary death statistics. Work on striking a balance between truthful information and hope. You know your clients best, and we know you’ll make the right decisions.

 

Focus on Your Neighborhood

 

When your client hears startling statistics of positive tests and intubations and deaths, they may feel overwhelmed. You can choose to talk to them about what is happening in their state, county, and neighborhood. This makes the situation seem a bit more manageable.

 

Talk About What You Can Control

 

You can remind your client about what they can control during this time: practicing social distancing, staying safe inside their home, and practicing good hand hygiene. This is an excellent tactic to decrease anxiety.

 

Turn Off the News

 

Just like us, our clients can sometimes become obsessed with news about the pandemic. Encourage them to turn off the news and focus on daily life activities with you.

 

Redirect Conversations

 

Finally, know when the conversation about COVID-19 is no longer helpful for the client. If your client becomes more anxious or agitated while speaking about it, redirect the conversation to something more pleasant.

 

Remember, you don’t have to talk about the coronavirus with your clients unless they bring it up first. When they do bring it up, give reliable information and know when the conversation is no longer helpful.

 

We know you will make the best decisions on behalf of your client.

 

Stay safe, 

-Robert

 

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