I had to stage a sit-in so that my father's doctor would talk to me. Then I had to fight so that he would schedule tests to find out why my father had ballooned +70 pounds in less than 6 mos. The nurses claimed it was over-eating. Right. That's why his ankles were swollen to the point that he couldn't walk.
I got so mad watching all the other seniors being stripped or all dignity or ignored even when calling for help that I decided to do something about it. I'm asking anyone with a story to share to get in touch with me. I'm going to compile true accounts into a book and distribute it everywhere possible. People need to know what happens in these places.
Most folks go to visit loved ones on evenings and weekends and make a determination about the level of care based on what they see during that limited time. Try to voice concerns and see what happens. Ask to speak to a doctor and see how far you get. I met several people who were concerned but afraid to ask questions for fear of how their mom or dad would be treated as a result.
This is wrong. My parents worked all their lives. They paid taxes. They pay for my father to be in a nursing home. Doctors and nurses are paid to perform a service. When did it become optional for them to treat patients with dignity and respect? Unless we are lucky enough to be killed by a mac truck, we too will find ourselves at their mercy. It's time to bring attention to the situation. Please share your stories. Anonymity assured.
Another fix, put family members on the state agency board that goes and inspects these facilities. They know what to look for.
The best solution would be for people to only use these facilities as a last resort. States should be required to provide the same funding for those who want to arrange for care in their homes vs what is paid a nursing home under medicaid. or other state or federal funding.
Thanks. If you need any assistance regarding the book idea let me know.
I just wrote an article for AgingCare about this very topic and my own experience with the neglect I saw...