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audit of clothes in nursing home

Lulu

Registered User
Nov 28, 2004
391
I know. So long as the care is good it doesn't matter about clothes being ruined/going missing. But clothes are a real problem becasue it is me who has to keep replacing them

I completed a property list on admission but have added other items subsequently which are never added to that list, and becasue of now not looking after my Mum every day I am unsure as to what she has got.

What do others do? How to keep track of clothing? It is all named by the way, with sew on labels, but this seems to make little difference.
 

fizzie

Registered User
Jul 20, 2011
2,730
Actually I do think it matters. I think if a residential home can't organise the laundry properly and efficiently it shows a lack of skills on their part and makes me wonder what else is amiss.

I would write a letter to the Manager saying that any further items lost will be claimed for on their insurance as the situation is now untenable and the costs to you are too high and that given the fees you don't think it is too much to ask that they ensure your Mother's possessions are kept in her possession. Add that this is also a matter of dignity and respect (that will get them hopping as that is what the CQC look for) and that you don't feel it is respectful to your Mother that they keep losing her very personal possessions.
 

jaymor

Volunteer Moderator
Jul 14, 2006
12,799
England
My husband has been in a nursing home for three and a half years and like you I listed everything, even down to make and colour so when anything was missing I could give colour and make. Over the time I have stopped, things sometimes go missing but eventually turn up again, some things get washed out and need replacing so now I just let it go and replace what I think needs replacing because of the harsh washing and as I now have no idea what is missing because I keep his wardrobe well stocked plus I never know what has gone to laundry.

I think the only solution would be to place a note on his records and on his wardrobe door to say all clothes to stay in his room for home washing. I think we have to weigh up whether it is easier to accept some loss or to do the laundry ourselves. With the amount of clothing my husband gets through in a day despite being bedbound, I gratefully accept having to replace clothing. My machine would be on every day, high heat and long wash plus tumble drier working overtime gobbling up electricity.

Sorry not really given you a solution have I other than to do the laundry yourself.
 

Lulu

Registered User
Nov 28, 2004
391
Thanks for the replies.
As much as I would like to do all the washing, I think like you Jaymore, it would be impossible at this stage given the number of times they probably change Mum during the day. Just something else to deal with, on top of everything else, I suppose. I mean, you do everything to help the staff, ensure Mum is well provided for, it is all propperly named ..... just having a bad day I suppose.
 

cragmaid

Registered User
Oct 18, 2010
7,941
North East England
For replacements...look at outlet stores and charity shops.
What I did was sort out Mum's drawers and re-list the contents, searched the laundry for missing items and put up a list of what she was missing on her door. I relisted after a fortnight and found there were a few things that I had not found during the first search. Then I gave a list to the laundry girl and to the office. Two weeks later I gave the office a fully up to date list of Mums clothing together with a list of posessions ie radio, TV, books mirrors hair dryer etc.

I accepted rightly or wrongly that things do go missing but I was prepared to kick off if they did not tell me about the things destroyed by heavy washing...like her washable seat cushion, her washable cardigan, her white knickers which all ended up pink:eek: Pink knickers are nothing in the great scheme of things but they could tell me that the sheepskin cushion was no more. :eek:
 

Lulu

Registered User
Nov 28, 2004
391
Thanks again. Yes, it is the not being told aspect of things going. And not having the energy any more to chase these things. I like things doing properly and so am destined to feel dissatisfied at times.
 

jaymor

Volunteer Moderator
Jul 14, 2006
12,799
England
Lulu there are many battles to fight, we just need to admit defeat on those we cannot win and save our energy for those we can. To me annoying as missing clothes are or infact other belongings that walk, I choose to let it go now, My husband is in the later stages and I am his eyes and ears and protector and the only thing that matters is his care.

I can think back to when he first went into care and I was annoyed that three chocolate wrappers from the day before were still in his waste bin. Why had his bin not been emptied? I returned home and went into my craft room to relax and do some crafting. Beside me stood a waste paper basket full of cut card and paper, not only was it full it was overflowing onto the floor. This was the usual condition of my paper basket, why the heck was I obsessing over three sweet papers?:)
 

Lulu

Registered User
Nov 28, 2004
391
I know, I know Jaymore. And I will let it go becasue like you I must ensure that the important things are being covered. You just get so tired of it all, on top of watching our relatives deteriorate. Trying to make a tiny space for just a little life of my own, but the space gets filled up!
 

fizzie

Registered User
Jul 20, 2011
2,730
Actually there is a bigger picture to this. You look out for your relatives but there are hundreds of people in care homes who have no-one to look out for them and guess what happens to them - they get to wear other peoples clothes, doesn't matter what the size is or whether it fits or whether it is comfortable because they haven't got time, they can't be bothered, there is someone else who needs more help - whatever the reason. I went into a care home a short while ago an lovely kind gentle man had been pushed into some trousers that were so small he could hardly breathe, the band was so tight it left a mark, lucky I was there , certainly it was for him on that day but I won't be there again to check and if people don't complain then this is the kind of thing that happens.
 

jaymor

Volunteer Moderator
Jul 14, 2006
12,799
England
You are quite right Fizzie, but unfortunately and this may seem very selfish, I have enough on my plate to deal with, I can empathise but sadly do not have the time or energy to take other people's problems on board.

I do infact tell staff and management when anything is missing and leave it to them to sort it out. I cannot go round checking everyone else. I see very little of the other residents as my husband in confined to bed 22 hours a day. When he returns from hospital he will be confined to bed in his own room for 24 hours a day.

Things do need to be managed a lot better but I fail to see how it can be perfect. My husband until two weeks ago was in a small 26 bed unit next door to a larger nursing home with 109 beds. The laundry covers both homes so they have washing from 135 residents a day. A very tall order to get it right every single time.

Ill fitting clothes are down to the carers putting them on and that is completely out of order, or if the resident has dressed themselves then again if you can notice so should the carers and it should have been sorted. The problem bought up in this thread was missing clothes and laundry problems.
 

fizzie

Registered User
Jul 20, 2011
2,730
I was at boarding school with 500 and it was never an issue so I'm afraid i don't accept that it is difficult to run, I do accept it requires good management.
I know the thread was about laundry and laundry being returned to wrong person with noone to look out for them causes difficulties and discomfort and upset and it shouldn't happen.
I wasn't suggesting you looked out for every resident in the home. i simply suggested that if people complained - and as the original poster said it annoyed her I assumed it was worthy of complaint - then the home would have to get it right.
 

Chemmy

Registered User
Nov 7, 2011
7,591
Yorkshire
I decided on quantity rather than quality in the end and resorted to buying from charity shops. You'd be amazed at how many brand new pairs of elasticised trousers end up there if you ask the staff - often they don't put them out on the rails.

I used to take a large pack of knickers every time I visited. I suspect if they got too soiled, they just binned them. My guess this is what has happened to the missing items in many cases. It must be a pretty horrible laundry job, to be honest.
 

daisydi

Registered User
Feb 25, 2015
255
Norfolk
I also have this battle. I seem to forever be buying socks and bras for my mum and trousers but they disappear and she always seems to be wearing someone elses. Grrrrrrrrr!
 

fizzie

Registered User
Jul 20, 2011
2,730
Hi Daisy
that is really horrible to be wearing someone else's underwear yuk. I would complain
 

BR_ANA

Registered User
Jun 27, 2012
1,079
Brazil
My mom is on CH for 5 years. I have choose my fights and I don't get this one.
I just bough cheap and beautiful clothes. I complain when they go missing fast ( less than 3 months). On end of summer and winter I bring her clothes home and send new ones. The old ones that can be used I keep for next year, the others whose name is not mother's I return. And some go to trash can.

Socks. If they are a different colour they stay longer than white or black ones. So I bough packs of colourful socks hoping that no other resident has something similar. Or I just buy cheap packs and I am happy when a sock is used more than 5 times.

I've known some residents that serve themselves from others clothes. I've seen some funny facts and some troubles ( a man dressed a broken belt from a new resident- 3 staff member with fingers hurt by belt and not able to open it).
 

CucumberWhisky

Registered User
Sep 23, 2015
56
Surrey
I am learning so much about CHs. I hate to admit that I'd never thought about laundry. Our GP suggested I start looking at CHs now and when I find one I like to put Mum's name down for the future. I hate the thought of it but know what questions to ask now.
 

Wigan

Registered User
May 5, 2013
73
I would make a list of everything that is missing with a rough cost of what you paid then present it to the Manager.

They can put the claim through their insurance.
 

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