4 ways you can help protect seniors amid COVID-19

Originally published: April 29, 2020

Health authorities across Canada are urging Canadians to stay home and practice physical distancing to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and COVID-19.

The Public Health Agency of Canada says seniors are among the most vulnerable to COVID-19, and that there is an increased risk of more severe outcomes of COVID-19 for those Canadians aged 65 and over, those with compromised immune systems, and those with underlying medical conditions. Provincial governments, including Ontario and Quebec, are urging everyone over the age of 70 to stay at home.

In an effort to help Canadian seniors and vulnerable family members, friends and neighbours, there are several steps we can take to help them stay home and stay safe during these difficult times.

Encourage seniors to register for online or telephone banking

Many seniors still visit their local bank branches to perform simple banking activities, even though the majority of their banking can be done online. To help the seniors in your life stay home, ask them if they have registered for online banking through EasyWeb or the TD app.

If they haven't, you can let them know that TD has created a number of free tutorials to help Canadians register for online banking, and to help customers manage their money with greater ease. TD is encouraging all customers, whenever possible, to bank digitally to avoid coming into branches.

Customers can bank online anytime with EasyWeb or from anywhere when they use the TD app on their smartphone. You can even be with them on the phone to help walk them through the tutorial to help get them more comfortable with the idea of online banking. You can also encourage the seniors in your life to register for direct deposit payments for their Canada Pension Plan or direct withdrawals for regular expenses, like utility bills. You can also explain to them how to check their balances online.

Find out how to bank with us online.

Shop for groceries online

To help minimize the number of times the seniors in your life need to leave their home, consider helping them order their groceries online for delivery or doing their shopping for them. For vulnerable seniors who need additional assistance, the United Way is supporting local organizations that provide practical services to more vulnerable Canadian seniors – with the assistance of the Government of Canada – such as delivery for groceries, medications, or other needed items, as well as personal outreach to assess individuals’ needs and connect them to community supports.

Help seniors to spot fraud

Unfortunately, fraudsters target vulnerable people and always try to profit from misinformation during times of increased anxiety, and these times are no different. The Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre has advised Canadians be on the lookout for scams related to the ongoing health crisis, including phishing, malware, and other malicious email campaigns. Help protect your family members by talking about common scams that often target elderly Canadians.

For more on fraud prevention, review our tips on how to protect yourself from fraud linked to COVID-19.

Stay in touch

Canadians everywhere are being asked by public health agencies to physically distance from one another, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't be staying connected by reaching out to our loved ones in other ways. Self-isolation can be a lonely experience for some people, so it's a good idea to check in on seniors and any other vulnerable people in your family and in your community. Call them or arrange video chats for them to see how they are and what you can do to help them.

DISCLAIMER: This content discusses current topics of interest in a general and informational manner only and may not be appropriate in all circumstances. Please ensure that you seek advice personalized for your situation from the appropriate professional, consultant or subject matter expert on the topic of interest to you.

Brought to you by TD NewsRoom

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