Brazil has been reported to be the second highest in Coronavirus related mortality with thedeath toll exceeding 46,500 people in the country. Physical distancing has made the time even more difficult for the elderly in care homes who are missing an affectionate human touch.

A Brazilian care home, Geriatric Clinic TrêsFigueiras facility in Rio Grande do Sul, has come with a novel concept to help its elderly residents safely embrace their loved ones during these pandemic times.

The idea of the ‘hug tunnel’ emerged shortly after Mother’s Day, when the facility staff noticed the senior residents feeling low in the wake of the pandemic-induced physical distancing. The facility which is home to 28 senior residents who have been in isolation since March 17, got the inspiration of this invention when Ms. Brito of the facility saw a video of a woman using a plastic curtain to hug her mother.

They then created these ‘hug tunnels’ made of large plastic sheets. These plastic sheets are designed with four plastic arm holes attached to one of the care facility’s entrances. Through these arm holes visitors to the care home could to hug and hold their loved ones without coming in direct contact with them. To make this safer, the ‘hug tunnel’ visits are being scheduled ahead of time and the entire area is being disinfected every 30 minutes to ensure complete safety for the residents and visitors.

Though not as good as a real hug, these ‘hug tunnels’ have definitely made the residents happier and let their loved ones visit them.

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