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If you could change something about the assisted living that you loved one was in what would that be?
Auds Girl
Posted: Monday, October 1, 2012 8:13 PM
Joined: 1/8/2012
Posts: 74

I posted a similar question on the caregivers site but thought I might get some more responses  here.  So if I could change anything about the assisted living other then the cost it would be better training in how to handle the behaviors and the causes of the behaviors.  Anyone else want to add something.
Posted: Monday, October 1, 2012 8:19 PM
Joined: 12/18/2011
Posts: 3097

I had my mom in a regular NH and there really is nothing I would change about it.  They treated her like family, it was pretty well staffed and the staff was very open and accommodating.
Posted: Tuesday, October 2, 2012 3:35 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 403

The first ALF my mom was in was very nice, but I would change the location. It was not in a very nice neighborhood.


The second ALF was a mile from my house. I would not change anything.


Then they decided that my mom needed a Dementia Care Facility which was right next to them and part of them. What did i change? I called their corporate office and sent a picture of my mom sitting in bed and laying down sideways. We found her like that in the middle of the day. The staff did not do anything to encourage residents to participate in activities,etc.


A week after my letter to corporate, they came down to check the facility and found they were lacking staff involvement with residents so they "retrained them".


By then we had already chosen to move mom to another facility in South Florida because her condition was deteriorating and we wanted her in a facility that spoke Spanish. But I am glad that at least I did that for the other residents left behind.

Posted: Tuesday, October 2, 2012 12:07 PM
Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 2105

I would change a lot of things.  On the outside it was very nice, inside, they were not well trained in dealing with dementia/Alzheimer's even though they had their memory unit.  They were chronically understaffed and undertrained.  When staff is burned out, they do not respond well to the demands and needs of a dementia client.  Their activities for dementia clients was very limited. 


In general, the food selections were not always that great for older folks, bones in the fish, tough meats.  It started to get a bit better foodwise just before my father passed away.


I made many recommendations to the director, who was very good at not listening.


It had potential, but it seems the corporation was more interested in raking in the money and providing limited staffing.


It was a few blocks from my home.  I thought it would be okay, but as my father's needs increased, I could see it wasn't the place for him, but he passed before we could move him.  I regret that immensely, that I didn't find a more suitable place for him in time.

Posted: Thursday, October 18, 2012 8:43 AM
Joined: 1/25/2012
Posts: 28

Your post really hit home with me.   He was there seven months,  I think he was bullied by two the staff.  few of the highlights are:  moved his room  five times, had special meeting where staff were there and two that he did not like complained about him, finally p\ut into a room with someone who I had requested a move from in the beginning,  did not tell him or me until he was moved. Of coursee I went rightr over but to no avail.  I was going to move him but physically he was not up to it.; So after fighting with directoor for a week he had to go to hospital then to nursing then passed in five days.  I lelt a message with the ombusman to ask what I could ddo to help others not be treated as he was.  She never returned my call.  It  was so sad to see so many in assisited living who seemed not to be able to feed themselves and not much help or even a care from  management( the caretakers did at least pretend to care).... I live in Greensboro, NC, everything passed the state inspection but his treatment was terrible.  \I was there daily to get drinks and try to see that he ate.  I want to do more to help others but have no idea where to start as it doesnt seem to be important to anyone who could help;  it is iall about the bottom line. He was not easy to deal with, but is that not part of the things one would expect in  care for dementia patients??????Would love to hellp others and can't.  Thanks you for your post as at least I can vent.
Posted: Thursday, October 18, 2012 9:22 AM
Joined: 12/1/2011
Posts: 1

I would change many things but most importantly I would change the lack of staffing. There were never enough trained people on the floor and my mother was left wandering alone most of the time. My heart ached for her everytime I came to see her. She was so alone. In addition, my mother's medications were being stolen. When all of this was found out I often wondered what it would have been like if she had been medicated properly. Unfortunatly she died before I could investigate.
Posted: Thursday, October 18, 2012 9:24 AM
Joined: 3/11/2012
Posts: 433

There isn't a lot I would change about my Mom's NH. They were awesome to her. she had a GREAT doctor who gave her wonderful care. The hospice team was wonderful to her and a great help to us. The nurses and aides where like family to us. There were 2 extra special ones who even came to the funeral home for calling hours. They loved her like part of their own family. One aide in particular fed Mom her meals every day and even when we moved Mom to a different room which was not in her area they allowed her to continue to feed Mom her meals because she was able to do so well with her and was able to get her to eat when no one else could. They were all just great.


Now for the changes I would make. Air conditioning!!! OMG!!! This NH was the old hospital that had been converted into a NH. The air conditioning vents were all in the hall and none in the rooms. So the only air that came into the rooms was what was able to filter in from the halls. Those rooms got unbareable at times!! Dad had brought a stand up fan to bring in air from the hall. He ended up asking to move her to a different room down the hall when he saw an empty room. I was against the move at first because I thought it would be bad for her. But in the long run it was the best thing for her. The room was cooler, there was a vent right outside the room so the fan brought in the cooler air. There was an empty bed next to her and they never moved a room mate in. So she basically had a private room the rest of her time there.


Still Waters
Posted: Friday, October 19, 2012 8:18 AM
Joined: 2/6/2012
Posts: 1092

There are too many things I would change to mention. It would be better for my blood pressure if I express to you what is good about Nursing Homes.

Having 24/7 access to nursing staff and doctors.
Not having to cook meals.
Having easy access to foot doctors, skin doctors and hair dressers.

That’s IT.


I can’t think of anything else good about a Nursing Home.

Posted: Friday, October 19, 2012 2:13 PM
Joined: 12/10/2011
Posts: 338

I would not have changed a thing, my dad was in a superb care home. It brought us so much peace to know how loved and cared for he was.
Posted: Saturday, October 27, 2012 4:42 AM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 4122

My mom spends the night with me frequently and we sleep in the same bed so i know if she is getting up...

I wish the NH would let me sleep with her there sometimes even if it was a cot next to her bed.

We take a 3p afternoon nap together everyday and we snuggle up together just like we did when I was a little girl.  

She cannot communicate her needs except for a word here and there.  I imagine she might feel scared about this but on the other hand I wonder if she has an understanding that she is unable to communicate.  Holding each other is in many ways, our limited way of communicating.  If i tell her she is safe she might not be able to understand or comprehend that but my arms wrapped around her hopefully show her i am there...

when my dad was in a regular hospital when he was dying the nurse invited me to sleep in the bed next to him....why not at the NH?

Posted: Sunday, October 28, 2012 7:54 PM
Joined: 8/7/2012
Posts: 218

There is way too much abuse and neglect when the families aren't watching.  There are way too many medication mistakes.  If you have a DPOA you should get familiar with the medical records of your loved one and check them once in a while.  Ask questions about the drugs and the doses.


If I had my way there would be cameras everywhere in these places so nobody would have the opportunity to mistreat an elderly person.   It happens more than we realize.  


I know some people have had good experiences,  but I kept my eyes wide open and I saw and heard things that infuriated me.  I have made several complaints to authorities and have succeeded in making a difference.  You can't make a difference complaining to DON's or Administrators of these places for the most part, but they stand up and listen when those that license these places stop by for a "look-see" and write them up. 


I am amazed at the families I know of that saw the same things I saw and did not speak up.  Though I was overwhelmed as a caregiver and family member, I felt it was extremely important to speak up for these elderly people who can't speak up for themselves.  There's no way I was going to let anybody exploit my mother.


And, I'm not done!