What should I do when the nursing home my Mom lives in has bedbugs? - AgingCare.com

What should I do when the nursing home my Mom lives in has bedbugs?

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The nursing home has not made this information public. I only know from workers there telling me when I asked why 3 rooms were in isolation. So I really shouldn't even know this. But I am scared to say anything as I don't want retaliation against my Mom. I think they should have to warn visitors as I don't want to take the bedbugs back to my house. They haven't called a professional, their maintenance man is spraying something in the 3 rooms. I don't know what to do to keep the bedbugs out of my Mom's room. And if they do get into her room, then what? Would appreciate any advice. Thank you.

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Yes, I have been all over the internet regarding bedbugs, for the second time, as my daughter moved into an apt that had them a few years ago. The apt management did call in a professional and eventually let my daughter move to another apt in a different building. On top of that we spread diatomaceous earth all over the floor, washed and super dried every fabric, got a new mattress, box spring and pillows with bedbug proof covers, etc. I just can't take those measures in my Mom's room. I read that Medicare doesn't take a complaint on bedbugs because they are considered a "public nuisance" not a "health hazard". To me they should be considered abuse as having bugs suck your blood in the middle of the night is mental and physical torture as I know from my daughter's experience. When I google bedbugs & nursing homes, there are lots of horror stories about employees taking them home and some lawsuits when the resident has gotten an infection from the scratching ending up in hospital visits or death. There was a suggestion of wearing disposable booties that I could throw away on my way out but then I am going to get asked why I am wearing them by the other residents. Do I have the right to tell the residents that ask when I shouldn't even know? I already never sit on anything due to the fact that residents often have leaky briefs. We have a Care Plan Meeting scheduled for next Friday, so I will bring it up there. That's why I was asking on here, to see if I had any other recourse if they aren't going to call a professional and if there are any other questions I should be asking that I haven't thought of. Thank you everyone.
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Mincemeat, it certainly incites hysteria in me :) Hateful little beasties!

But just as schools haven't a hope of stopping a nit outbreak if they don't deal with it en masse by informing all parents, it seems foolish of this NH to try to keep spreading bedbugs a secret. And more generally, I would be uncomfortable with any NH culture that made you feel that simply raising an issue might visit 'retaliation' on your mother. Time for a candid conversation with them, isn't it?
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This is becoming a real problem in student dorms, hotels and other public places, so there must be a way for these types of facilities to deal with it. I can understand why the admins want secrecy, but you don't need to play their games. Just ask for a meeting and find out what they are doing to address the problem.
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There would have to be a massive infestation in order for you to unknowingly transfer these bugs home. When you visit wear simple clothing and dont bring bags in and out with you. Why am I being so "blase"?

The simple word "bed bug" incites hysteria. They tend to live in clutter like roaches and love the seams in mattresses and piles of clothing and bedding. In truth, even though they take a blood meal at night, they have never been proven to transmit any disease. They are considered a nuisance insect and NOT a public health threat like mosquitoes and cockroaches.

I would study bed bugs on the internet. The most effective way to get rid of them is to "super heat" a room. It has been reported that some are resistant to insecticide. A person who has been bitten by bed bugs will have red marks, like mosquito bites. You may also see small blood spots on the sheets.

So, check out your Mom, look at the seams of the mattress under the bedding, look for specks there. You are within your rights to discuss this with the NH administrator. Unfortunately, bed bugs are a national epidemic. Keep us posted with this interesting topic. Tell us how it goes.
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The only effective way to erradicate bedbugs is to cook them, heat the room to 120 degrees, I believe, with such a large place I do not know how they would do that. Seems like if they did one room at a time, the bugs would move to the next room. They are probably already throughout the facility.
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Call the town the NH is located in and ask what department inspects their facilities. It may be a state function. I would report them since they have not taken aggressive steps to inform visitors and protect their patients.

Aggressive steps would be having bedbug dogs come in to identify infestations and a professional exterminator to resolve this serious problem.
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Call the Health Department, state level, that licenses these places. They should keep reports confidential.
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