If everything is properly labeled with permanent marker, isn't the nursing home responsible for missing blankets and prescription glasses? - AgingCare.com

If everything is properly labeled with permanent marker, isn't the nursing home responsible for missing blankets and prescription glasses?


I have spent over 150.00 on blankets.........Dad has been in this nursing home now a little over 3 years.............when he was in the A wing we had some issues but since they moved him to the B wing, within the last 3 wks not only have two more blankets gone missing (they were marked with a permanent marker and also Dads prescription glasses have gone missing) - he is a stroke victim and cannot move anything but his right hand and the movement range is limited........so if he had taken off his own glasses they would have been right on the bed or the floor next to him.......after endless complainng on this past Saturday they found one "throw" in the shower room........so i went and spent 14.00 on another blanket and brought it to Dad on Sunday - I wrote over the whole middle of the blanket in permanent marker hiw very long Polish name.............I was flabergasted when i went to visit him yesterday and it was gone..............i specifically got navy for the dirt and instead they still had on him a iight green blanket that does need laundering..........mind you i also had a note taped to his closet stating to "not remove any blankets from his room" - don't they have to reimburse me for this? I spent 150.00 on an embroidered and personalized Navy blanket for him for Veterans Day - something had spilled on it so i took it to be dry cleaned...........that is actually embroidered with his whole name and WWIi veteran.............he cried when i gave it to him and now i am afraid to bring it back - i am not a wealthy person.

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Hi there, I'm like Equinox. I have the signs up stating that the family does mom's laundry. I've been very lucky, so far. In the 7 months that mom has been in assisted living, we have only "misplaced" one bath towel, which showed back up..and we have lost about 3 socks. There are quite a few people that walk her hall (mom can't wander, wheelchair) that have dementia...but none have entered her room to take anything. I do have her more expensive jewelry here at home and just told myself not to leave anything there that we may never see again. I realize that it isn't possible for some families to do the laundry (my daughter gets on to me all the time for doing services that the facility provides)...but I live 1 mile from where mom is..so I go over 3-4 times per week...pick up dirty clothes, leave clean ones, change sheets, drop off clean towels, restock her refrigerator, depends, ensure, etc. I have seen other families come in with the laundry basket on their hip, so I know I'm not the only one. As far as missing items being the nursing homes responsibility..I would look at the agreement that was signed upon admission. There may be an answer or at least some guidance in there. Good Luck!!
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JeanneGibs answer is also, 100% a possibility. The ppl who work at the Nursing home barely have time for lunch, let alone head games. It's just a matter of tracing back where the blanket was last seen. It's there, it's just a matter of where? It's very hard getting compensated for anything that goes missing... believe me. Over $200 cash money was stolen from my room once. My dad was heated to say the least. Because there was No proof of who took it, nothing could be done and that wasn't the first or last time things that belonged to me went missing or were stolen.
The best I can tell you is that be careful of what you bring your dad. Yes, it's supposed to be his home but it's still also communal living. Administration will probably tell you, as I'm sure you already know, not to bring things that are worth a lot of money. Start buying your dad cheaper blankets hun. I know how that sounds but it's an unfortunate truth. Be there for him as much as possible. It helps a lot when it comes to his stuff. You could always hang that special blanket on his wall. There's No easy answer to Nursing home problems....
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As a former Nursing home resident for over 8yrs here's my advice...
Whenever you bring or buy new items to your loved one, you're supposed to go to the Head Nurse of the unit/floor/wing, and fill out an "inventory/belongings" list. This type of list should've been made when you first moved him in. Also, all clothing, blankets, sneakers and the like should have a permanently affixed label. Not just permanent marker. The Nursing home is responsible for his belongings but did you agree to do his laundry or do they? In all reality, the short staffing and hectic way most Nursing homes are run are more likely the reason the blankets go "missing". CNA's tend to "borrow out" other resident's belongings to those resident's how don't have very much.
There should be a laundry room where the aides put the soiled laundry, until the laundry service comes to get it. In that laundry room, they may have a bin of unlabeled belongings. You can ask to look thru that bin. If that Nursing home uses a laundry "service", that company could be the one "losing" the blankets.
Leave that special blanket at home until you have a chance to look into the things I'm telling you.
Worse comes to worse, go to the Administrator of the building. Not the owner, not the assistant administrator, the current administrator. He/she is responsible for the day to day problems in the building. Honestly, I don't know how far you'll get over a bunch of blankets but don't let them brush you off! Go into full mama bear mode and take care of your dads stuff!
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Don't assume this always happens in the laundry. If the name is on the item the laundry can get them back to the correct place. And even if you prefer to do the laundry yourself, if clothing has been soiled by a bathroom accident it may be necessary for it to be washed immediately.

My mother has dementia, but she is not on the memory care floor. (She is not a wanderer or have behavioral issues.) Although most of the residents on her floor also have dementia, the behaviors and risks are not the same as they are on the memory care floor.

I made her a double-sided fleece lap blanket with her favorite baseball team logo on one side. She loved it but didn't remember it the next day. It disappeared within a couple of days. My sisters and I tracked it down and learned this

1) An aide put it over her legs and pushed her to a community area where she often reads magazines.
2) She got too warm and an aide removed the blanket at set it on a table.
3) Later another aide came by and asked whose lap blanket was on the table. Mother did not remember it was hers.
4) Another resident said it was his. The aide gave it to him.
5) When I heard this story I was pretty sure I knew which resident this was. The dear old man has a similar baseball fleece blanket on his bed and I've seen it when I've walked by.
6) Sure enough, the blanket was innocently in his room. He was embarrassed and mother was glad to get a new blanket all over again.

Lost property is a fact of life in a facility where many people are "not in their right minds." Perhaps there is some deliberate stealing going on, but the vast majority of times it is not intentional or malicious. It is not staff playing silly spite games.

Dad took his glasses off. They fell to the floor. A cleaning person placed them on the dresser. A resident wandered in to visit with your dad, saw the glasses, and "knew" they were the ones he'd lost, so happily took them back to his room. That is a far more likely scenario than that the staff was deliberately trying to cause heartbreak.

It takes enough energy just to deal with the losses. Try to let go of the extra emotional energy it takes to hand out blame and be suspicious of everyone.
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I have had many iclothing disappeared. I have signs everywhere in my moms room indicating "family does washing". Sometimes I don't think the aids care to read the sign. Ive made phone calls every week to have the staff member in charge to remind "over and over again to not take moms laundry to the laundry mat. it seems like every time I would go out of time many items have disappeared.I ask 2 other family members to do her laundry while I'm away. I have even taken a picture of the clothing assortment before I leave so I will remember what is in her closet. I prefer doing her laundry because just the other day her dentures appeared in my washing mashine. This is her 4th pair. In two years. all paid out of my pocket.
You have to do what's best and what works for you and keep tabs on what is in her c.losett.
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Get to know the laundry aides and ask for some assistance. Most places have a large cache of "lost and found" items in a closet.
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I would not bring an item that needs dry cleaning to a NH. We do not bring personal blankets to the NH for mom at all, they have plenty of blankets if she's cold and they maintain a lovely supply of hand knitted throw and shawls that are used when a resident is chilly. I would limit linens to a washable bedspread with a distinctive print.
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I discovered that stressing over the personal property of the resident is not productive. I have spoken to the family's of residents from many assisted living facilities, especially Memory Care and hear the same thing. Things go missing. Sometimes they will show up if I put the word out that's it's missing. Other times it doesn't.

I agree with Jeannegibbs. The residents do not comprehend that they may be taking someone else's items or it could be the resident is giving it away. I also think that some staff may take things, but that's not easy to prove. I just accept it and try not to take anything of value to my loved one. I put her name on all things I take in and still they may disappear.

I wouldn't stress though, because I would be shocked if you find a place that this does not happen. I also have found that my loved one who has dementia, doesn't actually know what items in the room belong to her. If anyone asked her, she would give things away and then not remember that she did it.
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Things disappear in a memory unit more frequently than in the nursing home unit, because often persons with dementia have lost their inhibitions and their concepts about respecting the ownership rights of others. It is not malicious or intended to torment. It is a result of the disease process. Residents wander in and out of each other's rooms. They pick up things they like. They offer each other things that are admired. No evil is intended.

There is a good description of this behavior in the book "Creating Moments of Joy" by Jolene Brackey.

This does not solve the problem of missing items, but please understand that the staff is not likely to be stealing blankets with someone else's name on them, and they have no use for someone else's eye glasses. That is illogical. Persons with dementia are illogical. It is most likely that other residents are taking these items, perhaps sometimes being offered them by your loved one.
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u565425, I noticed in your profile you mentioned your Dad has Alzheimer's/dementia.... would it be possible that your Dad is gifting these items to other residents who come in to visit him? If that is happening, he might not remember doing that. I read on these forums that is common with those with memory issues.
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