1. Debby Short

    Debby Short Registered User

    May 29, 2008
    38
    Near Heathrow Airport
    I have been reading Margaret W Thread 'Not happy with Care Home', and want to know why our loved ones are treated like this.

    We all want our loved ones to be treated with respect and the dignatity they deserve. My mum is 65, in the last stages of AZ (only diagnosed 18mths ago) and about to go into a NH. With everything that I am reading I am dreading it. Especially for my dad he will not be able to deal with things like laundry missing, or be able to afford to keep replacing clothes. Bless him he only ever sees the good in people.

    Me & my brother live 100 miles away, and my sister and other brother 50 miles away - I want to know that when she goes into the NH everything will be OK - but that isn't going to happen.

    My mum was a carer (albeit for physically handicaped adults), but she always treated them with the respect they deserved. They didn't ask to be in this situation it just happened.

    The people caring for them should remember - this could be them one day, and is this how they would want to be treated!!!!!

    Sorry, it just makes me so cross.
    Debby
     
  2. Laylabud

    Laylabud Registered User

    Sep 7, 2007
    111
    Kent
    Debby i am so sorry to hear that you are concerned about care homes, i was very worried about having to put my Mum in one. Unfortunatly we have the fear of these places as we always hear about the negative and not the positive side which is a real shame. The EMI home that my Mum has gone into has about 5 different houses on a big complex and all the laundry is done in a central area of the complex, so far after 2 months i have had no problems at all and i cannot fault anything, my Mum is well cared for and her dignity is protected.
    Make sure that when your Mum goes into a home that her clothes and other belongings are clearly labelled with her name and room number. All i can offer to you at this stage is to talk to other residents family and see if they have any concerns or problems and also speak to the care unit manager.
    Good Luck and let us know how you get on.

    Laylabud
     
  3. christine_batch

    christine_batch Registered User

    Jul 31, 2007
    3,388
    Buckinghamshire
    Dear Debby,
    My husband was placed in a E.M.I. Unit thirteen months ago.
    I did not want my husband who was 61 at the time to go to the Unit attached to the Hospital. I found a lovely N.H. with all the facilities Peter required. It is like a 5 star hotel and the care the my husband receives is exactly what we do expect for our loved ones.
    I know that many write about the bad experiences they have encountered but very few write about the good ones.
    If I had any queries, I was able to discuss it with the Manager.
    Wishing you the best
    Christine
     
  4. Margarita

    Margarita Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    10,824
    london
    #4 Margarita, Jun 17, 2008
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2008
    I also agree with that as my mother been to quite a few care home & come home with other people clothes .

    On a positive Note

    where in other one they do an infantry of all her clothes when she arrives and when she leaves also making her room number on the inside of the label of her clothes with a black felt tip pen.


    As that is your main concern if I was you I would approach the care home manger telling him your concerns about your father & what arrangement policys have they put in place with the laundry staff that clothes are given back to the right person .

    Then go from they ..
     
  5. Tender Face

    Tender Face Account Closed

    Mar 14, 2006
    5,379
    NW England
    Hi Debby - have you seen this thread? http://www.alzheimers.org.uk/talkingpoint/discuss/showthread.php?t=10945

    I'm afraid I bombarded it with lots of negative observations of a Care Home my mum was placed in briefly for 'respite' due to illness .... but what it did was to help me know what to look for - so now that I have absolutely no choice in mum needing permanent 24/7 Nursing Home Care I have been able to find what I believe to be the right place for her with confidence ... and yes, building up relationships beforehand with staff is helping me with that confidence ... (actually a place I had crossed off the 'short-list' before even viewing but then had to revisit my own thinking) ..... :eek:

    I hope when people post about bad experiences on TP it is not to scaremonger - but to help others perhaps avoid the bear-traps some - like me - have fallen into already when I just haven't done my homework :rolleyes:

    Being prepared for the worst helps us secure the best?

    Hope all goes well, keep us posted, love, Karen, x
     
  6. May

    May Registered User

    Oct 15, 2005
    627
    Yorkshire
    Hi Debby

    My Mum is in nursing care. I looked at numerous homes before we chose this one. It felt 'right', it wasn't the best decorated, it doesn't have 'flash' furniture or 'gadgets and gizmos'. Yes, we have a problem sometimes with laundry, but Mum is treated with dignity and respect. She is bed bound and can do nothing for herself, but the girls always explain to her what they are doing ( ie changing, washing etc)and are protective and I would say in some cases loving towards the people in their care. I suppose what I am trying to say is that there are lots of good care homes out there, just as there are some bad ones. Hope all goes well for your Dad & Mum, and that you don't have any problems.
    Take care.
     
  7. Debby Short

    Debby Short Registered User

    May 29, 2008
    38
    Near Heathrow Airport
    Thanks for all your replies, I feel much better. I think the problem is, I am just scared at the moment, the last time I saw mum was Mid May, when I first took her to hospital. I am seeing her again first weekend in July and I know she has deterioated loads.

    I worry so much about wether she will remember me or not, and my dad coping alone, and being so far away from them both.

    I am sure my dad will find the right home, I will suggest we look together when I go to see them - although he only has a choice of 3, and one of those is already cross off the list. (he has been asked to write to SS about his experience there).

    Isn't it said that at the end of the day it comes down to money - which my dad doesn't have.

    Once again thanks for your replied.
    Debby
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
     
  8. Debby Short

    Debby Short Registered User

    May 29, 2008
    38
    Near Heathrow Airport
    Thanks for all your replies, I feel much better. I think the problem is, I am just scared at the moment, the last time I saw mum was Mid May, when I first took her to hospital. I am seeing her again first weekend in July and I know she has deterioated loads.

    I worry so much about wether she will remember me or not, and my dad coping alone, and being so far away from them both.

    I am sure my dad will find the right home, I will suggest we look together when I go to see them - although he only has a choice of 3, and one of those is already cross off the list. (he has been asked to write to SS about his experience there).

    Isn't it sad that at the end of the day it comes down to money - which my dad doesn't have.

    Once again thanks for your replies.
    Debby
    xx
     
  9. Brucie

    Brucie Registered User

    Jan 31, 2004
    12,413
    near London
    Hi Debby

    I think the important thing is to hold the experience of other TP members as a knowledge base that you may need to call on at some stage.

    I believe it is not helpful to approach a care home looking for problems. If we go in looking for problems, for sure we will find them because nowhere - even our own home - is perfect.

    When I see something that I don't like then the first question I ask myself is - "is this my tender feelings being scratched or is it actually something important for my loved one?" This is most difficult to do in the early stages when we feel most guilt and horror at the thought of putting a loved one into care.

    Over time, things that once appeared hugely bad come into perspective. The old boy who was wearing my Jan's blouse when I went in one day, for instance. A quiet word with the staff and it was resolved, but it was a jolt when I first saw it.

    The clothes trashed in laundry - well, these days, I have an arrangement where staff select the clothes at a local store, clothes that are best practically for my Jan, but that will also stand up to fierce washing temperatures better.

    So Jan no longer wears the elegant clothes she once did, but her comfort and the sustainability of her wardrobe is more important now. Jan is at an advanced stage, so obviously my sensitivities in the area of clothing are geared to her comfort.

    Much more important is the level of care. What happens to laundry, while very important of course, is less important than the safety and well-being of the person, and the care they receive.

    This is only in my opinion, though that is 7 years into regular visits to Jan's home.

    When clothes get lost, then I think it is probably a good idea to have kept receipts and to ask for their value returned. We may not get it, but it may focus the home somewhat.

    Much more important in my view are things like spectacles and hearing aids.

    I'm trying to sort out a situation at the moment for a family member who has early dementia plus terminal cancer. He was admitted post operatively to casualty with bleeding and they removed his digital hearing aids [value £3,000] for some reason to examine him and that was the last time they were seen. An old spare one - £1,400 - was taken in to try to help him, because the fact of his being unable to hear was being interpreted as increasing dementia which was not the case. They lost that in one day.

    Homes have to function all day, every day, every week, every year and they have a changing population, both in terms of people, but also in terms of the stage of dementia those people have.... it may get worse, behaviourally, or it may get less troublesome.

    Even 'good' homes will stumble from time to time. Jan's did earlier in the year when they left her in the sun and she had bad sunburn. This was an unusual event and I don't believe it will happen again. I have provided pictures of her burned face for their use in training staff to realise the results of any lapses of care.

    As Norman says: "Day by Day"
     
  10. Skye

    Skye Registered User

    Aug 29, 2006
    17,000
    SW Scotland
    Dear Debby

    You've already had lots of reassurance, and I can add to that. My husband John has been in an EMI unit since October, and I have had few problems. He is well treated, his dignity is preserved at all times, there is lots of one-to-one attention, and the activities are tailored to the needs of the residents. I've had no problems with laundry.

    The only items that go missing are the sheepskin heel protectors that I buy for him. I've asked them to leave them out for me to wash, as they have to be washed at a low temperature, but may have infection. I don't want the laundry staff to boil them. They have disappeared so often (and I have to buy them online, and pay postage!), but we've at last worked out why. The staff tend to put them in bags and leave them in John's bathroon, and I suspect the cleaning staff pick up the bag as rubbish! They now leave them unbagged and tell me when they've been changed.

    I think you're right to go with your dad to look at places. Try to get on friendly terms with the staff, at all levels. I'm certain this makes a huge difference. I'm welcomed by name by nurses, carers, cleaners, kitchen staff, office staff, etc, and it makes such a difference. When I leave, I feel as if I'm leaving John with friends.

    Yes, there have been glitches, mainly at times of staff shortages (holiday times!:eek:), but that happens in hospitals too.

    I'm sure with your support your dad will soon accept the necessity of a NH, and hopefully your mum will soon settle.

    Love and best wishes,
     
  11. Quack

    Quack Registered User

    Mar 25, 2008
    17
    Yorkshire
    There is hope...

    Hi Debby

    Not all care home stories are bad. My mum went into full time care about two months ago. My dad was taken ill and it became apparent that caring for her was too much for him. She has two separate weeks in an emergency respite bed at a local care home, despite concerns from the local EMI team, she settled well and we decided it was time to find a long term place for her.

    The only bed available was a nursing home which had a specialist dementia unit. In short, she hated it, we hated it but it was the only option available. We looked at other homes and put her name down at a couple we liked, we didn't hold out much hope of moving her though...

    Then last week a bed became available at our No 1 choice. We took her yesterday and settled her in. There were fresh flowers in her room to welcome her, and when invited to join the afternoon activity, she joined in without a backward glance.

    It's early days but you've no idea how pleased we all are..

    Bruce is also right though. It's annoying when clothing goes missing, the dozen or so pairs of socks have disappeared in the old home in just four weeks, but the worst is a pair of glasses and a brand new digital hearing aid. No wonder Mum felt out of it, I know she can fiddle with it and leave it around but really, it went missing in the first week there!

    Harking back to Hendy's original post - any ideas on labelling glasses or hearing aid's?

    So Debby look around and put your name down for any homes that you like. Good things can happen and it's not all about money, this home is £100pw cheaper than the other and seems to have more staff. Admittedly it's 'care' not 'nursing' but TLC shouldn't cost anything should it ?

    Good Luck with your search.
     
  12. mocha

    mocha Registered User

    Feb 17, 2006
    176
    Lancs, England
    Nursing homes

    Hi Debbie,
    I am another one who is very happy with the home my husband of 49yrs lives.
    It was his 74th Birthday yesterday and they had decorated his room with about 12 balloons and Happy Birthday streamers as well as decorating a lounge. I took two large chocolate gateaux to cut up for the residents and a nurse came in to sing Happy Birthday to him. Our son had made a bird feeding station to stick on his window and as long as the birds take to it he will be thrilled to watch them.
    I've had a few niggles with laundry but I bring home his woollens so that works well
    Good luck with your hunting.
    Bye Aileen
     
  13. Lynne

    Lynne Registered User

    Jun 3, 2005
    3,433
    Suffolk,England
    For my Mum's glasses I have used a spot of pink nail varnish on the inside of the side-pieces (near the hinge) where it doesn't show much.
    Ditto her hearing aid, but choose a spot where the skin doesn't touch it.
     
  14. Debby Short

    Debby Short Registered User

    May 29, 2008
    38
    Near Heathrow Airport
    A BIG BIG thank you to you all, I feel so much better (think I have been having a few bad days, very weepy).

    Good idea about the nail varnish on the glasses/hearing aid, must remember to tell dad that.

    Dad is now applying for 'Continuing Health Care', he is lucky he has an excellen SW and the hospital are helping him as well. I have warned him (due to everything that I have read on Talking Point) that he may be turned down, but not to worry as he can appeal, and will then most probably get it.

    Mum seems to fit in all the categories, mood changes, deteriorating and unable to look after herself.

    Fortunately, mum is in hospital until this has all been sorted, they will not send her home to dad.

    I am going to get some name tags for dad and all his friends can start to help him sew them into mums clothes in preparation.

    Am also going to tell him about the 'emergency kit' what a great idea - and he is very handy at things like that.

    Will keep you all posted on the progress.
    Debby
    xxxxx:)
     
  15. Cate

    Cate Registered User

    Jul 2, 2006
    1,370
    Newport, Gwent
    I am pleased to say not all nursing homes are dreadful. I was definitely lucky enough to find one of the good ones. Yes it’s a ‘no frills’ place, no posh furniture and no posh curtains, but Oh my gosh, it feels like home. The staff are truly wonderful to my mum, if they feel she needs a kiss and a cuddle she gets one, when she has been agitated one of the girls will lay on the bed with her until she has dropped off to sleep. Absolutely nothing is too much trouble. When I have been upset I get a cuppa and a cuddle too. They have been my angels and my hero’s.

    My advice would be go with your instinct. Don’t discount a place because it looks a bit tired around the edges, go with the home where the staff put the residents first and foremost, where good records and care plans are kept and updated regularly, where they consider the families wants and wishes too.

    Good luck in your search.
    Love
    Cate
     

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