Golden Age Center Director Meaghan Murray announced this week that she has been approved to take appointments for in-person assistance to senior citizens at the Main Street facility.
The appointments would be for one person at a time, and there will be no walk-ins allowed. All social distancing precautions will be taken and masks are required, Murray said.
The approval marks a milestone as the Center hasn’t been able to have any programming or help seniors with issues since March. After asking recently to be able to help seniors in-person with paperwork, applications and other issues in the office, it was approved.
“Now I do have approval to have in-person advocacy by appointment,” she said. “If someone needs to fill out an application, MassHealth paperwork, Medicare forms – any kind of the advocacy I used to do in person before we closed – I can now take in-person appointments to do now. That’s kind of huge…We want people to know the Golden Age Center is still here for them.”
One of the unheralded disasters of COVID-19 has been the isolation and loneliness for senior citizens who are trying to keep safe and staying at home for long periods of time. Murray said they haven’t been able to do anything in person, and they have been trying to do things online for seniors. However, many don’t have computer access or training to be able to get online for those resources.
That is exactly the issue with advocacy as well, she said.
“The advocacy piece is so important now,” she said. “Now City Hall can be a challenge because so many departments are closed or by appointment only. Even getting a residential parking sticker is difficult to do…We have tried to do things over the phone with seniors, but it’s nearly impossible to do over the phone. Most of the applications are based on personal information and you need signatures too.”
Appointments can be made over the phone, and those coming in will have to participate in a brief screening and masks are required. There are no walk-ins, she reiterated.
To make an appointment, call (617) 635-5175.