Mom's nursing home doesn't seem to understand Alzheimer's. Is there anything I can do? - AgingCare.com

Mom's nursing home doesn't seem to understand Alzheimer's. Is there anything I can do?

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It seems like Mom's Nursing Home has very little training in dealing with Dementia diseases. They do things like leave her on the toilet with the instruction to pull the call cord when she's done. Of course she forgets that 2 seconds after they tell her. They don't put her shoes or house shoes on because she didn't ask them to. Then her feet get really cold. Just a bunch of things like that. About 3 months ago they lost her glasses. In the occasional patient treatment planning meeting, I complained about it and asked that they replace them since they lost them. Their response was "okay, we will get an opthamoligist to come out and give her an eye exam". I told them she can't answer the questions needed for that. I gave them the name and phone number of eye doc that made the lost glasses. Fast forward to today. I got a phone call from an eye doctor the nursing home called and they said "We have been asked to go to the nursing home to do an eye test on your mother, and her insurance doesn't cover eye care". I explained why this would not work as they could not trust her answers.
Do any of you have this problem and how have you handled it? This is such a fine line we walk between doing what is right for your loved one and ticking off the people who might take it out in her.

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Call the doctor who made up her lost pair and get the lens prescription off him. It won't be perfect, but it's a lot easier than a new eye exam for a lady with dementia: I can tell you from experience that some opticians have scant understanding of dementia and in fact can get quite grumpy about having to work round it, which led to a frank exchange of views in his consulting room... Ah happy memories...

I should also look for a better facility, if I were you. How any NH can function in this day and age without at least rudimentary training in dementia care for all staff beats me; but from your point of view these minor points will become serious safety issues before long. And meanwhile, she's paying for substandard care. Never be rude, but don't just leave it, either.
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Often eye glass providers will not duplicate a prescription that is over 2 years old and insist the person gets a new eye exam. This happened to me, so I had to make an appt with my opthamologist for a new exam.
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GranJan, sounds like your Mom needs to be placed in a facility that has an Alzheimer's/Dementia section where the Staff is fully trained. Start looking for a new place. Is Mom self-pay or is Medicaid helping with her care? Some facilities don't take Medicaid :(

I remember when my Mom's glasses were missing for a couple of days. Just by chance I found them under her hospital bed, they were up against a part of the complex metal railing where one wouldn't see them, by chance I did.

For your Mom, instead of having a new eye exam which would be impossible to have done, why not just go to the place where your Mom had purchased her last frames/lenses, as the place could duplicate a new pair of glasses since they keep all that information on file.... unless the glasses were quite old, like 10 years back.
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