Changes on Nursing Homes to Enhance Elderly Care

According to executive director of the National Consumer Voices for Quality Long-Term Care (a support group in Washington) Sarah Wells, it is happening all across the country, in several various models.

The Green House idea is the most complete attempt to recreate the nursing home, according to experts – even the method for medical care delivery. In conventional nursing homes, the staff usually has barely defined tasks. There are those that give baths, those that do the laundry, and then there are those that cook. The system is just based more on efficiency, something that does not give much value to the individuals’ needs and personal preferences.

Inside a Green House, the staff consists of 2 certified nursing assistants. These 2 perform all the tasks mentioned above, but only for a smaller number of residents. Additionally, there is 1 registered nurse who backs up 2 or maybe 3 houses.

Director of NCB Capital Impact (a nonprofit community development funding institution) Robert Jenkens said that if only one person does everything, there can be more time to allot for the residents and there will be a chance to meet someone as a true individual. NCB Capital Impact offers consulting and loans for several organizations building a lot of Green Houses. Aside from that, you are also not confined to a set daily routine of “wake, meal, and bath” and you can always rearrange someone’s day depending on her personal preferences, he continued.

Should the nursing aides not feel to bathe and dress residents hurriedly, then it will be the thinking that the residents themselves will possible do these things themselves, thereby encouraging independence.

A certified nursing who has been employed in the conventional nursing home in Green Hill for already 20 years, Erika Dickens has just been moved to the new Green House. She said that she used to have tired hands most of the times and she had to wake the residents at a specific time, even though they still did not want to. But now, if a resident still wants to stay in bed, Dickens can always just give her a milkshake.

The idea of de-institutionalizing elder care is quite famous. Based on a poll back in September by NPR, the Harvard School of Public Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, about 82% of pre-retirees, or those adults beyond 50 years old who have not yet retired but are already intending to, and about 78% of retirees are fairly to highly concerned regarding being contained in an institutional setting that does not have the comforts of a home.

Daisy Jane Antipuesto RN MN

Currently a Nursing Local Board Examination Reviewer. Subjects handled are Pediatric, Obstetric and Psychiatric Nursing. Previous work experiences include: Clinical instructor/lecturer, clinical coordinator (Level II), caregiver instructor/lecturer, NC2 examination reviewer and staff/clinic nurse. Areas of specialization: Emergency room, Orthopedic Ward and Delivery Room. Also an IELTS passer.

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