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Bed Assists (not Bed rails) in Assisted Living Facilities (not Skilled Nursing Facility): I hope someone can respond to this for me. My mother has a bed assist not a bed rail. The assisted living facility she is in is now insisting on an overpriced product that would also require that I buy her a bed with a metal frame versus the bed with a wood frame that she has now. I want to make sure I am clear, what she is using does not even cover a quarter of the bed, it is not a bed rail. Anyone have any experience or recommendations regarding some kind of bed assist/bed cane? I think this is an overreaction by the facility to the bed rail/restraint regulations for nursing facilities and their interpretation is very narrow. Keep in mind also I asked if it was acceptable when she moved into this assisted living facility in May. It is now June 28th and it is now an issue. No she has not fallen, never has been caught in it etc.

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Just an update, they still haven't replaced the bed assist that had to urgently be addressed! And I have to pay for it but they order it....so there is some additional financial gain for them.
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Bbtwinks, the bed mobility device guidelines are issued by the FDA. I will look up the ombudsman's information, thanks.

Countrymouse, exactly. honestly there isn't another person in the ALF she is in that has a bed assist. I found that really odd. I see why they would want some control or even review. It is not that they deem the device unsafe....the management only authorizes 2 types. The one my mother has now meets the FDA guidelines.

In any event. I keep pushing back. We shall see, but in the end I am sure I will have to give in so they don't say she's not following their regulations so she can't stay. Which in the contract they can do.

Thanks again for all of the advice. I think I am going to look into being on their family committee....
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There was a similar question a couple of weeks back about over-the-counter medicines and the facility's insisting that only their own approved (and very expensive) dispensary could supply them to residents.

Again, there are two issues at play - the facility's responsibility for welfare; and the protocols/policies they have to have in place to allow them to meet their obligations.

You can see why they would want to have some control over equipment being used on their site. If the equipment fails for whatever reason, and the resident is injured, they're going to be blamed for it and don't tell me the family will put its collective hands up and say "oh well it was our fault, we should have bought a sturdier one."

Having said that, the reasons for the policy, the risks it addresses and how they can be minimised, all matter. So if a lady has a perfectly good bed with a hardwood frame, and the riser/bed assist/grab handle is safely anchored, and a baby elephant could safely lever itself around using this set-up; then there's no reason to object. What matters is whether the equipment is being assessed in situ by an appropriate person and found to be safe - it's just easier for the facility to say "buy these ones or else" - plus they make a modest profit and can get bulk discounts from the supplier.
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I think I would call in the ombudsman. The phone number should be posted in the facility. The ombudsman will be able to get to the bottom of things. Also, there are federal regulations in addition to the state regulations that have to be met.
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If they force everyone to buy only these two types from 2 vendors only then they can make money off of it.
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Thanks all. I did extensive research on this. It is not a state regulation. There other other approved devices from the FDA but this facility only will allow two types. They flat out told me it was THEIR rule as I pushed this all the way to the facility director and showed them the FDA guidelines. So, it's just arm twisting at this point.

I have handled it. Thanks again for the input.
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Most long term care facilities, including AL's, have state regulations that are tightly enforced, based on what I have seen. Maybe, they are nit picky, because if they are inspected and the state is nit picky and they get fined, it's something that they have to be careful about. Plus, I don't see how they could be making money off the beds.

I was looking around online for violation reports on my state AL website. I saw where this one particular place that I knew was charged with a violation, paid fine and had to make corrections. It sounded very serious. With a careful reading, I discovered that the problem stemmed from a CNA or nurse, clearing off a table in their dining room. THAT was a huge violation and it looked like a federal case. I'm not kidding. According to their rules, only people who are hired and in the employ of the AL for kitchen and dining room duties can clear off a dining table.
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Bottom line is that these places have you over a barrel, most people are unwilling or unable to make another move and they know it. You may want to seek clarity from whoever oversees ALs where you live, an ombudsman? Around here staff seems to change regularly, including management, so if you can obfuscate and delay sometimes the changes they are pushing for may be forgotten.
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I already have one Cwillie. It is similar to what you are describing, I don't know if they are getting a kickback but would bet something is up if they are insisting that only two types are acceptable. They game me a printout of the two acceptable devices and I did ask for the policy/regulations that require this. I am really frustrated as she had to adjust to moving there and I also had to make other changes for her, and now this. It is not a safety issue is a narrowly interpreted rule.
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There are dozens of different ones available, you can probably see a good selection on amazon or simply if you google. The one my mom used had arms that slid under the mattress ans was held securely in place with straps tightened around the box springs. I think it was under $100 (CDN).

I would ask to see the written policy. Perhaps the AL is getting a kickback from the supplier?
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