May 25, 2015
For those families who do not have the time to take care of their loved ones, they must find an alternative for their elder relatives to be suitably taken care of. These alternatives are known as Convalescent homes. Convalescent homes are supposed to provide a “home like” environment for the elderly as they gradually grow older and recover from their illnesses. However, these convalescent homes are not always the most suitable place for our loved ones. More often than not, the convalescent homes are poorly managed, expensive, and do not give the elderly the sufficient care that they need. To become more effective, convalescent homes need to offer better management, more affordable care, and provide more attention towards the patients.
Convalescent homes are another form of nursing homes; a convalescent homes purpose is to provide short term rehab services. Although they seem to be accomplishing the exact opposite of that. It is evident to see that poor management plays a huge role in not meeting the needs of its patients after reading the article “Just How Bad Is Nursing Home Care”. The GAO report from “Just How Bad Is Nursing Home Care?” (Ila Swan) article states that, “Hundreds of nursing homes have filed bankruptcy… due to bad business and/or greed”. This shows that instead of trying to take care of patients, they just exploit them for their money. The same article states that 10 out of 15 largest convalescent home chains have been charged with: fraud and/or unjust enrichment, racketeering, and wire fraud (Ila Swan). That’s without mentioning the statistics that 17 percent of residents were taking medications inappropriate for their dietary requirements, 19 percent of records gave no indication that necessary physical assessments had been conducted, and many fail to prevent bed sores (Just How Bad Is Nursing Home Care. Ila Swan). These homes are supposed to be helping our loved ones rehabilitate quickly, but with this poor management it is delaying their recovery for weeks, even months costing the patient and their families a lot of money. The way we can fix the management is by making sure that the people who are being hired to take care of the elders do not take advantage of their positions.
Not only do convalescent homes have poor management, but they are also extremely expensive! Unless the patient has Medicaid or Medicare, the patient has to pay for their care and treatment out of their own pockets, which can be overwhelming. According to “How to Pay for nursing Home Care” (payingforseniorcare.com), the average cost for a convalescent home can range up to fifty thousand or more. With this high cost, many patients tend to spend a bulk of their money within six months that they are there. Even those with Medicare aren’t completely saved. Medicare only offers temporary relief, after a certain time, Medicare only takes care of a certain amount leaving the family to take care of the rest of the cost (payingforseniorcare.com). Convalescent homes should be made affordable to where the family doesn’t always have to intervene on the payments. And the way to ensure that a patient is able to afford the care they are paying for is by closely analyzing an applicant’s income and financial assets prior to acceptance into the program.
Lastly, the convalescent homes don’t provide their patients with the right amount of attention and care that they need. Huge bulks of the patients are senior citizens who are put into these homes because their families don’t have the time to take care of them. However, according to How Should Society Address the Needs of the Elderly, it states that “…there were a total of 470,709 of adult/elder abuse. This represented a 60 percent increase from 1996 to the year 2000.” Often times, most homes are understaffed which doesn’t allow for a strong patient and nurse relationship. “The Loneliness Elder Epidemic” (Anne-Marie Botek)