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When seeking a decent nursing home to place my Mother in, I searched the government website in order to compare them and read the Inspection Reports performed by the State. Most all of them have the same infractions. I can't understand how the nursing homes aren't held to a higher standard of care for our Seniors. Many are so dependent on being fed, transferred, bathe, etc. and majority of the nursing homes have inadequate staff to do a decent job.


I am seeking information of what we can possibly do to voice our concerns to make positive changes in care at the nursing homes and hold them accountable. If anyone has any information, please share that information with us. Thank you.

In addition to comments reguarding nursing homes, remember that patients are frail and vulnerable to infections. Plus, antibiotics are losing their punch, so that it is left to the patient's own immune system. Compound that with others who bring in superbugs and residents with memory issues that do not always wash their hands and touch everything around them. They just cannot keep residents in their rooms. And yes nursing homes are being held accountable. If infections rise, they get paid less by CMS.

There is some literature out there that for all the years health care workers don disposable gowns, thIis practice was no worse than for those who did not.
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Reply to MACinCT
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Nursing Homes are very very expensive to run – so is anything that requires 1-on-1 care 24 hours a day, including prisons and child care. The profit motive makes it more difficult to provide a luxury service without horrendous fees. Yes, the increasing numbers of people with extreme old age and very poor health, is presenting a funding nightmare to Government and a fee nightmare to families. It was interesting to read a post by Countrymouse saying that it was already a political issue in the UK. Australia is going through a Royal Commission on standards at the moment, and the answer is probably going to be just a bit more government funding that won’t solve the problem. The Standards bodies employ people to nit-pick, and then don’t follow up. My own view is to look again at the medical issues of drugs and surgery that simply prolong life, at least over age 90, and to permit assisted suicide. It would be good to think that the various Churches can focus on their own sins instead of their usual opposition.
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Reply to MargaretMcKen
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NYDaughterInLaw Nov 7, 2019
I agree with you 100 percent. Good answer.
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In my state, the facility must correct the problem. They are also fined, so, there is incentive to get things right. I find that some facilities have no deficiencies and then the next year a bunch. They are cited for many things though, like, scratches on a door frame, wrong utensil on dining table, CNA clearing plate off dining table.....it's just odd some things that are not allowed.

I've had occasion to visit in about 4 different facilities over the last couple of months. My dad and a friend were in rehab in nursing homes, plus, my cousin is in an MC connected to regular AL. I have been quite surprised to see how well they appeared and how good they seemed to function. Clean, clean, clean and no smells. Staff pleasant, alert, attentive and available. This is NC.
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Reply to Sunnygirl1
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All I can say is the State of DE is really a pain when it comes to inspections. To the point that a chip in the paint is an infraction. And those infractions better be fixed in a certain time. My daughtervworked rehab/LTC for 20 yrs there.
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Reply to JoAnn29
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One thing you can do is volunteer at a local nursing home. You can volunteer to read to residents, visit them, play music for them, and probably a lot more things that the director would love to have staff to do.

Today's seniors are far sicker than seniors were even 20 years ago. Today's seniors have more diabetes, more overweight and obesity, more heart disease, more brain disease, more frailty, etc. The top 15 percent of the sickest elderly use 80 percent of health care resources. They are enormously expensive and yet their quality of life is worse than the sickest seniors of 20 years ago.

Nursing homes are better today than they were 20 years ago and yet still remain very sad places. Our society keeps our elderly alive artificially or performing heroic acts of resuscitation on their frail, lifeless bodies instead of letting them go when their body has given out. Our society puts pacemakers into people with Alzheimer's as if that's going to improve their quality of life by extending its quantity. That all has ramifications including them living for years in a nursing home. It's all very sad.

Rather than point fingers at the nursing home staff who are underpaid and are short staffed and are abused by residents whose brains are hopelessly broken, "positive changes" must first come from within the family unit, which is the building block of society. Individuals and families must also be held accountable. Not everything that is wrong with nursing homes is the fault of the staff.

Be the change you want to see in the nursing home. Volunteer. Get involved in your local council on aging. Advocate for nursing homes. Do something to help an already established organization in your community do better. Do the little things and the big things will start to take care of themselves.
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Reply to NYDaughterInLaw
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Medicare does inspect them, but it can only do so much and conduct x number of inspections.

Based on experience, I know that we were naïve and inexperienced when we first began our long journeys, but as we waded through them, we learned, especially to inspect facilities before using them, and how to interact with people who are underpaid in order to accomplish our goals.   

Ideally, we should be able to contact our elected reps and get support, if only for public hearings addressing the situations and potential solutions.  But, unfortunately, we're living in far from normal times.   

AARP does involve itself in monitoring, but like everyone else, it can only do so much.

I think organizations of individuals, perhaps with some corporate support, could eventually become effective, especially if boycotts of noncompliant facilities were considered.    But grass roots organizations take a while to implement, and this caregiving field is not one which allows much outside time for lobbying. 

I don't know of potential answers, or even if there are any good ones.  Caregiving is a field which I believe has mushroomed and exploded, with guidelines and Medicare oversight, but a lot is still left to families to figure out and battle on our own.

I wish there were some better solutions though.
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Reply to GardenArtist
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The real problem is finding people who want to work as underpaid care givers in Assisted Living and Nursing Home facilities. These places MUST agree to pay their care givers MORE than they are currently paying them in order to get enough staff in place to care for the residents.

Period.

It's always been this way in the care giver industry too. The residents are charged a fortune yet the care giving staff is paid a pittance. Sad but true.
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Reply to lealonnie1
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Caregiverhelp11 Nov 7, 2019
I agree. They should hire better qualified staff and pay them more.
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I really genuinely don't believe you can trust ANYBODY with your Senior's care. I believe that this "nursing home" stuff is a complete SCAM. My advice is to avoid them and never ever to sign any legal papers that the Government asks you to sign. It is just a cash-grab. Perhaps you disagree which is OKAY. May God Bless you and help you find some solution.
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