Friday, March 29, 2013

Nursing home diaries

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The Administrator decided today to have the Activity Director try and bring in Culture Change.  I suggested Culture Change, but she wasn't listening, as usual. I get the picture, this Administrator is not truly interested in real Culture Change, she is trying to use it as nothing more than a marketing gimmick.  This pisses me off so badly.  I want to kick her in her big fat butt!

Culture Change is when the entire nursing home works together, with the Administrator, who is the only one with the authority to usher in real changes.  The rest of us are simply peons.  

Real change is getting rid of those damned nursing stations.  They can be placed in offices, not in the center of the residents' home.  I do not have one of those stations in my living room, I trust you do not either.  Medicines should be administered individually, not to everyone at meal times.  When the Administrator asked how that could happen, I told her about a wonderful invention called a medicine cabinet, just like we all have at home.  When she asked about keeping others out of the medicine cabinets, I reminded her of another wonderful invention, called a padlock.  Wow, that's a no brainer.

Make every room a one person only room so each person can have more personal items and can look out the windows whenever possible.  Nursing homes would not lose money, they can charge a bit more per room, surveys show families would gladly pay a bit more for a pleasant living space.  

Small groups can be permanently assigned to the same group of seniors every single shift, whenever possible.  Studies show that smaller groups of permanent aides cuts down on seniors' stress levels and thus cuts down on the use of psychotropic medications.  OK, I know pharmacies have a nice little racket going on forcing medications on seniors, kind of like the racket for drug testing welfare recipients.  Get over it pharmaceutical companies.  

Invite the aides for each resident to the care plan meeting because they know more about the resident they are assigned to than the damned nurses do.  Nursing homes are set up for the convenience of staff, not as a nice home for the paying customers. 

This is just a start.  But it's a good one.  No having to build whole new buildings or anything, just shuffle things around in the ones they already have.  

This can all be done, it is doable.  If you have a loved one in a nursing home, talk to other family members, press the facility for Culture Change, any Culture Change is better than none.  

There are many other changes they can do, I will list those on another blog.  But these are a good start.