Many of you remember that day in March when the Departments of Health of the states of New York and New Jersey announced that hair salons would be closing. Everyone rushed to schedule one last appointment. Some people were successful. Many of us were not! Women and men struggled for several months trying to look their best without the benefit of their friendly stylist and their usual cut and color. We were living through dangerous times, but “hair” became a key issue for many of us along with the procurement of supplies like toilet paper, face masks and hand sanitizer.
When the salons re-opened, most of us scheduled an appointment right away. Some of us may have had to wait a month due to the government’s new guidelines for enhanced safety precautions but by now we’ve all had the opportunity to have our hair cut, colored and/or professionally styled. What a feeling! We feel and look like ourselves again.
However, many people may not realize that some salons were not permitted to re-open. Salons located in long-term healthcare settings are still closed. Older adults who live in their own homes in the community can go to their favorite salon and have their hair styled. Older adults who live in a long-term care community cannot. They have not had the opportunity to visit the salon to have their hair done. They do not feel or look like themselves yet…even now.
So when an employee, a certified nursing assistant, steps up to the plate and says, “I can wash and style hair,” our hearts soar! That means we are now able to meet the needs and rights of the elders living in our homes while remaining in compliance with the strict guidelines as presented by the Department of Health for long-term care communities.
Is this picture worth a thousand words? You bet it is! This picture is worth a thousand words and a million thanks!
The Jewish Home Family is the parent organization of the Jewish Home at Rockleigh, Russ Berrie Home for Jewish Living, offering long-term care and short-term rehabilitation; Jewish Home Assisted Living—Kaplen Family Senior Residence, providing assisted living and memory care; Jewish Home at Home, offering home health and other home- and community-based services; and the Jewish Home Foundation, the organization’s philanthropic arm. For more than a century, the Jewish Home has worked to advance the art of living for older adults and their families, regardless of race, religion or financial ability. For more information, email [email protected], call 201-784-1414 or visit www.JewishHomeFamily.org.
Charlene Vannucci is director of community outreach at the Jewish Home Family. She earned her bachelor’s and master’s from Columbia University and is an adjunct professor for LIU Hudson.