A Lifeline to My Son During COVID-19

Even when my son’s nursing home closed to visitors, I could still check on him

Donna took care of her son Josh, who has cerebral palsy, at home for 23 years. He moved into a nursing home five years ago after a bad fall, and she built her daily routine around visiting him twice a day.


When nursing homes shut their doors to visitors in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, she worried she could not give her son the daily care and attention that he needs and deserves.

Fortunately, she says, technology offered a lifeline.

Donne uses a video device to check in on Josh several times a day.

“Instead of worrying all the time about what’s happening, I can just look and see what’s happening.”

In the past, when she could not visit in person, she would call Josh on a cellphone. But she had to rely on nursing assistants to answer the phone and bring it to him, since her son has limited mobility. Now,  she uses a special feature that allows her to look in on Josh.

…instead of worrying all the time about what’s happening, I can just look and see what’s happening.

The stress of separation

“When there’s a crisis, you realize just how vulnerable  people are and how scary it is to be separated.” 

Donna feels far more secure now that Josh is staying connected to his family. In fact, she says, Josh may be getting more visits than ever. She’s not the only one calling him – Josh’s grandmother and three brothers also like to video chat with him.

And Donna looks forward to hearing his voice and being there for him, like she always has been. When he sees her on his video screen, he yells, “Donna!” and she calls him, “Joshy Woshy Pudding and Pie.”