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I asked if she could feed herself, and they said yes. But she was so stiff, I couldn't even get her arm up so she could grab her burger. They told her family she is having trouble swallowing. She is skin and bones. I fed her and she ate at hamburger, tater tots, a yogert, a full banana and a cookie and enjoyed every bite. Are they covering for the fact that she is not being fed, explaining her emaciation. She is not long for this world, and maybe they are helping it along. Is this standard practice? I also tried to readjust her legs, and couldn't even move them. This is disturbing.

From what I have seen, unless the resident is still sharp mentally, or has friends or family members who check on him/her routinely and serve as advocates, the needs of the resident tend to get overlooked or forgotten. The staff get busy, there is often considerable turnover, and "corners start getting cut".
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cak2135 Aug 1, 2019
Tell the staff you don't care if anybody's busy or not.
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Yes...when my mother was in SNF for 10 months, I came every day & brought different things from home that she liked to eat. I’ve at times come & she had plate of food in front of her untouched with nobody to help her. She didn’t like the food & the bones by her neck & shoulders were starting to show. Another time I came & her tray was nowhere near her...she couldn’t reach it if she tried. I yelled at Aide who did that & demanded explanation...another Senior CNA came in to “smooth things over “ & say she thought I was coming & I would help her” & that she is not the regular Aide, blah, blah, blah, After I took her home, she ate better & now her bones don’t show. It’s hard work..but if there’s someone in family who can’t do this, then they should have care plan meeting & insist she have someone to help her eat. If she has trouble swallowing, she needs purée foods. Also Ensure drinks. She may be entitled to Hospice Aide to help her during a meal time. Hope this helps. Hugs 🤗
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Her POA needs to request help with meals and then someone needs to monitor that is happening.

I would contact the state and file complaints, I have found that is the only way to get anything fixed. Fear of fines or losing their licensing is the only language that they understand, especially a place that would do what you witnessed. Your friend is being starved to death, how cruel is it that she has food in front of her and can't get it in her mouth. We don't even treat prisoners like that.
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I would contact family or M..P.O.A. an let them know what happened. If this is going on alot or neglect contact St Nursing Board or Ombudsmen. Or look up how to file complaint on a nursing home in your state. An encourage family or friends to visit OFTEN. Goodluck an god bless
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She is "skin and bones" because she is not being fed. Yes--if family is not there to feed the patient they will just take it away and chart "refused" and be done with it so the patients slowly starve -- none of the CNAs have time to feed each patient. Before I had mom's feeding tube put in, it would take me close to 2 hours to feed her a single meal, and with enormous difficulty. She eventually needed a feeding tube due to kidney failure from DEHYDRATION; it would take me all day even to get a cup of water in her, one teaspoon at a time. She's doing great with her feeding tube!

If family is not involved with the care the patient will die very slowly.
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I'm appalled at all the people who say that those who can't feed themselves are left to do without! Mom's nursing home had several people who needed to be fed and many more who needed to be encouraged and supervised, all of them were in the dining room under the care of a PSW. Every meal was charted. Modified diets and supplements were given as needed. The general rule of thumb was to offer 3 times before accepting a refusal. I can see people slipping through the cracks in AL because people there are expected to be self determinate, but a nursing home is supposed to be about full care!
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worriedinCali Aug 1, 2019
I’m appalled too but I witnessed it with my FIL. Except his issue was extreme difficulty swallowing. He was served meals in his room and no one helped him to eat. I don’t know even know if it would have made a difference if they had, though.
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I agree this is concerning. Couple of thoughts. Would they usually bring her to the dining room, but brought the meal to her room because she had a visitor who could help her eat? Do you have any idea why she is so stiff? People with advanced Parkinson's can get very stiff and can also have swallowing difficulties. However, it sounds as though your friend ate her meal just fine while you were there and is not on any modified diet. If the NH thinks she's having trouble swallowing, they should get a swallowing evaluation from a specialist (speech therapist) and, if necessary, put her on a texture modified diet. Being so stiff she can't feed herself must be very frustrating for your friend, but it sounds as though she has a good appetite and will benefit from being assisted during eating. She'll be able to take in more calories if assisted, and they will also be able to watch her closely if they think she is havng swallowing problems. If she is losing weight and is "skin and bones," she might also benefit from an evaluation by a nutritionist and be given a high calorie diet, with supplements such as nutritional drinks. Do you know if someone in your friend's family has medical POA? If so, they should ask for a care conference to discuss the situation in a non-confrontational way.
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Justme44 Aug 1, 2019
Really great tips & thoughts:)
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I told the staff at NH when mom was there recently for skilled nursing rehab that she needs help cutting food, reaching for things, etc.

The woman in admissions said the staff helps when needed. I was at the NH daily. Sometimes it was mealtime. They just dropped food off when they saw me there.

Some people don’t have visitors. Those people do need help. It is sad.
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cherokeegrrl54 Aug 1, 2019
It was the same way when i would take my mom to visit her sister in MC for dementia..at first she began in the dining room, but in a short while she could no longer feed herself. If it had not been for ONE granddaughter, she would have died much sooner. If a resident has a visitor, they simply drop off the tray and walk away....and this was in a supposedly “upscale” facility....sad, but true...
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I have to say this common in the hospital too. Too many pts and not enough help. I often see pts with a food tray in front of them,, and not a bite is taken, because they can't. I learned from my ILs times in hospital that you better have a family member on site.. Luckily my mom was able to feed her self in rehab, and dad had a lot of help in MC,, but this is not always how it goes.
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Rosedaughter60 Aug 1, 2019
I work in dietary in a hospital and if I see a patient with a tray, even if I did not deliver it, I will go in and ask if they need help. If they say yes or appear not to be capable of feeding themselves I get a nurse in. I then go one step further and contact the dietician and let them know the patient is not being fed while the food is fresh. All hospitals have volunteers and the nurses can call on them to help patients that cannot self-feed. No excuses in my book. My question to anyone who complains is "If this was your child, is this how you would want them treated? If you have a lack of staff, you don't punish the patient, you skip your break and work 2x harder.
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Me again... Thanks for all your help. I called her daughter and she called the nursing home, and they did say they will help feed her. But she is in Iowa, and her Mom is in Florida. They may also call Hospice. I hope they do what they said they would!
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Isthisrealyreal Jul 31, 2019
Good job QIR.

Will you be able to check on her and determine if her weight is stabilizing or increasing?
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