Mom (94) with dementia already broke a hip by standing up by herself in the home. They won't let me use childproof locks. Do I have rights?

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She goes into wardrobe (closet) to get clothing. Home says I can't use childproof lock because it's a dignity issue. Dignity or safety; which is more important at this point? Do I have any say or rights in this circumstance?

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The locks won't really help. As Maggie says, she won't remember it is locked and get up anyway. Or she'll stand up for some other reason. Even though it is very painful each time she has to transfer out of her wheelchair, my mom can't remember that she has a broken hip and shouldn't get up alone. The nursing home can't "restrain" her but they do monitor her closely. Often when I come she is sitting near the nursing station, folding towels or doing crosswords. Or in the dining room pulled up to a table, drinking coffee, and chatting with another resident.

Mom's NH celebrates its 50th anniversary next week. The building is really pitiful compared to new ones that are designed to accommodate large awkward machines (like sit-to-stand lifts) and have many nice common areas. But the staff is excellent and we are satisfied.
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Great points, Maggie. Tpot, this is the facility's problem to solve. Have a meeting with DON and DSW and brain storm but make it clear that they are the experts! For my MIL, we made a funny sing with a picture of my BIL in diving gear with some humorous saying about sleeping with the fishes ifshe got up by herself. She may need a picture or icon. She may not comprehend words so much anymore.
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Here's what I learned by mom's stay at the nursing home . . . when comparing it to all others. Buildings that have been retrofitted into nursing homes are often sorely lacking in large common areas -- like the HUGE dining room with HUGE TV at the one mom was in. People spent most of their time right in there -- supervised...clear view from the nurses' station...earshot of loads of staff all day long. Some older buildings even have their dining facilities (their largest common room) stuck off in some corner someplace and lock them up in between meals. This is a poor arrangement. Me? I wouldn't put mom in a place like that. And the only reason I even KNOW about the problem of retrofitting buildings is because I toured a number of new/old facilities when we were thinking of placing mom.
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A nursing home has the right to institute whatever rules it would like unless it impacts safety. They obviously have a rule against child-proof locks on residents' personal closets. Not much you can do.

Child-proof locks aren't going to solve your problem. She won't remember it's locked and will STILL get up to change . . . if that's what she's really doing. My mom tries to get up when she has to go to the bathroom. Forgets she can't walk -- which is exactly how she broke her hip last March.

While she was at the nursing home for 2-1/2 months of rehab, I noticed many other patients getting up . . . and I heard their chair alarms go off . . . and I saw nurses, aids, activity coordinators and anyone else within earshot (even visitors) rushing to their aid. This is lack of supervision on the part of the nursing home. Period.

Have a meeting with the appropriate supervisor(s) and ask how they intend to address your mom's forgetfulness. The way mom's nursing home addressed her propensity to get up from her wheelchair upsupervised was four-fold: #1 chair alarm; #2 a balloon on the back of her wheelchair indicating that she needed walking assistance to alert staff when they were around; #3 keeping her in the dining room watching their 72" TV and pushing/locking her wheelchair right up to the heavy dining room table; #4 putting her wheelchair right by the nurses' station at other times for closer supervision.

Talk to staff. This is their problem to deal with. And your problem to make sure that they DO. ;) Good luck!
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She has alarms on both bed and chair which actually says " Do Not Get Up. Please sit down and call for help". She gets it into her head at some point during a day that she HAS to change her clothes. She would pull herself up to get clothing from wardrobe(that was how she fell and broke hip) . I took clothing from wardrobe and put in dresser thinking she could access them while sitting. But she now insists on changing her slacks by standing up to get one pair of pants off and the other on. She doesn't remember her broken hip or that she even stands to change clothes. The aide had been putting her clothing on the top shelf of the wardrobe and that seems to work for now because my mother doesn't realize they are up there. Do I have any legal rights as her caregiver to put child safety lock on her wardrobe?
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She needs an alarm pad on her chair and bed to alert staff when she's getting up.
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