Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Minnesota senior homes slow to lift lockdowns on family visits


March 11, 2021

Jerry Holt - Star Tribune

Rosie Eberhard, a Oak Meadows Senior Home resident, filled out puzzles as she and other ladies sat near the entrance of the Oakdale senior home in February.

Carol Tonkin thought her 94-year-old mother's nearly yearlong struggle with loneliness and depression would finally come to an end after she was vaccinated against the novel coronavirus in late January.

No longer would Eunice Wollum be confined to her bedroom for days at a time, occasionally pleading in vain for the opportunity to see her family. Finally, Tonkin thought her mother would have enough protection against COVID-19 to visit with her eight grandchildren and great-grandchildren, whom she has not seen since October. Rules barring physical contact would finally be lifted, Tonkin hoped, enabling them to hug, kiss and hold hands.

For now, though, little has changed. A lockdown that was designed to protect residents from the coronavirus remains in effect at Wollum's facility in St. Anthony and regular visits have yet to resume. Wollum still spends much of her day gazing out her window at a busy thoroughfare, with little human interaction.


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