This article reflects on COVID-19 restrictions imposed on elders in Ireland through the lens of the right to private and family life (Article 8 ECHR), focusing on stay at home orders and recommendations advising elders to avoid social contact. Furthermore, we examine restrictions on visiting nursing homes given the high death toll in that setting. In our analysis, we zero in on the principles of foreseeability and proportionality, highlighting areas of concern and aspects that we submit should be considered in a proportionality assessment. Ultimately, we argue that it is a mistake to view the COVID-19 pandemic solely as an emergency. In this manner, the solutions suggested through the law - restrictions on movement and visitation bans - are too narrow and fail to address the underlying structures, such as, issues in the healthcare system, the limited home help for elderly and poor conditions in nursing homes.