Assisted living hosts first family visitation after 10 weeks

Published: May. 22, 2020 at 11:10 PM EDT
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By: Amber Spradley | WCTV Eyewitness News

May 22, 2020

VALDOSTA, Ga. (WCTV) – Langdale Place, a retirement community and assisted living facility in Valdosta, hosted family visitations on Friday after no guests were allowed for 10 weeks due to the coronavirus.

About 60 families showed up to see their loved ones, and they were each given five minutes to visit. Social distancing guidelines were still followed, with staff arranging seats at least six feet apart.

Executive Director Jan Brice says they've been fortunate to keep residents safe from COVID-19, but they’ve had to keep out visitors for more than two months to help do so.

"We have had deliveries, but other than that, a glimpse here and there is all they've seen of their family members," Brice said.

Alphonso Hall was seen playing a game of bubble-war with his granddaughter Anais Hall-Garrison and great-grandson Alphonso Hall, who shares the same name.

Alphonso was grateful for the time with his family and says he felt, “joy, pleasure, love and thanks to people who set it up. I'd like to thank them very much.”

His granddaughter was also full of appreciation.

"I found out about this last week ago, and I was just thankful to be able to not only appreciate, you know, my grandfather, but also appreciate the healthcare workers because they're the most important thing right now,” Anais said.

Jasmine Evans, and administrative assistant at the facility, says the last couple of months have not been easy.

"It's been challenging, honestly,” she said. “It's been hard to see our residents struggling, missing their families. They have to stay in their room a lot."

But she witnessed a ray of positivity on Friday.

She says she saw, "Lots of tears, um, and lots of laughs and lots of smiles. Like you can't see their faces, but you can see it in their eyes. And just, just lots of happiness today."

Director Brice says the event ran so smoothly, they do anticipate holding another visitation day soon. That announcement will be emailed out to all residents’ contacts.

"I don't know who's gotten more excited: the resident or the family member,” Brice said.

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