My 93-year-old mom refuses to take her medicine and management is threatening to evict her. How can we get her to take her meds so that she won’t get evicted from her apartment?


Touched by an Angel. My 93 year old mom lives in a residential situation and once a week her guardian angel visits her and takes her out and, etc. She has been diagnosed with paranoia and maybe dementia by a psychiatrist who prescribed meds. She refuses to take them and is causing problems at the facililty about people coming into her apt. and stealing from her. She says they have a key. Actually, she is misplacing things - they have been found later. The management is threatening to evict her. We cannot convince her that nobody is coming in. She says we are all against her and don't believe her. How can we get her to take her meds and see if that helps her delusions?

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Have the staff person who dispenses the medication document it (time, your Mother's willingness to accept it, etc.) for 10 days. If you find that your Mother did not take her medication, discuss with the facility staff whether they have a proposal or need to amend and update the plan of care for your Mother. Is it possible that the status of her conditions make her an unsuitable patient/resident for the level of care offered by this particular facility? You would know best. Do you feel she is receiving adequate care and is safe in the environment? Can she acknowledge that if she doesn't cooperate with good behavior, willingness to take medications, and taking decent nutrition then she will not be able to live there?

Our family dealt with similar problems. Paranoia and misplaced items are a reality with their age and dementia symptoms. Also, there actually were other patients who came into apartments and took items. Those patients were not suited to the type of care being offered at the facilty. They wandered unmonitored until someone reported trouble.

As a routine, the staff came in at night with enough noise and flashlights to wake our family members. When you are wakened out of deep sleep, you do begin to wonder if someone is coming in to take things.
My sister, a home health registered nurse, asked the facility to provide more monitoring of its patients who wander, take things and cause trouble. We gave them 60 days to correct the problem. When they did not offer practical solutions we then decided to move our family member elsewhere. We were fortunate to have an alternative option.
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Does she listen to anyone in your family to where she will calm down enough to take her medication? Can someone be there at the same time everyday to see that she does? Is the medication taken 1x a day or up to 4x a day? If you have the time and ability to be there for her, GREAT, give it a try! But, you may need to look for facility with more nursing capabilities. As she is refusing to take her meds, she needs staff that can and will get her to take them. She is not going to get better with out them.
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