Archive for the ‘Nursing News’ Category

Residents Paying Millions for Nursing Home Space

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

In other news, we’ve recently realized just how desperate the elderly are becoming as they search for quality long-term care. The Sydney Morning Herald recently reported that future residents of elderly homes are putting up bonds valued at more than $2 million in order to ensure they’ll have space in a home later in life.

This amount is realistically unreasonable. By the time they’re done paying the bonds they will have spent an amount that is at least 2-3x what they would actually pay for the care itself.

Sounds like the government needs to focus a bit more on making sure there is space so that everyone can receive care. This type of financial abuse is simply unacceptable.

California Law Mandates Display of Federal Ratings

Wednesday, January 26th, 2011

California is the first state in the country to pass a law making it mandatory for all nursing homes to display their federal rating reports. Nursing homes can receive up to 5 stars, and the ratings (handed out by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) must now be prominently displayed.

The ratings are based on health inspections, results of health complaints, staffing hours, and the quality of care. Many advocates against the bill argue that these things are difficult to judge.

What we’d really like to know is what nursing homes plan to do to reduce noise and create calmer environments for their patients. Maintenance staff could easily grab a few Green Glue 5 gallon buckets and renovate the rooms, one at a time. Perhaps then those in their last days could rest peacefully – without listening to their neighbors and the constant drone of machines.

Mandatory Background Checks in Nursing Homes?

Wednesday, January 12th, 2011

A recent article on chronicled the life of a bill filed by the state senate, mandating that all nursing home employees should be subject to criminal background checks. Current state law requires nurses to undergo checks, but says nothing about administrative employees, maintenance, or those who prepare food.

Even though these employees do not necessarily have direct contact with patients, they are still in their vicinity and have indirect contact with them on a daily basis. Those living in nursing homes are often incapacitated on some level and, as such, can’t work to protect themselves – against anyone.

We’re not sure if this is as important as – say – grabbing some Green Glue tubes to take care of the sound problems that constantly plague residents but we do recognize the safety concerns at hear. What we really wished we had seen was some statistical data on the amount of nursing home abuse and neglect cause by those in non-direct-care positions.

Nursing Schools and Placentas

Wednesday, January 5th, 2011

A couple of excited nursing students recently thought it would be OK to take pictures of themselves posing with a placenta. They posted the pictures on Facebook and, instead of tons of glory, they got a serious kick in the gut.

What happened?

The four students involved were kicked out of school.

The case is now in courts. Apparently an instructor did not actually tell them “no” when they asked if they could take the picture. The picture did not identify the owner of the placenta, either.

The school, on the other hand, simply found the behavior unprofessional.

What do you think?

The Battery Powered Liftkar- Great for Nursing Home Deliveries

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

Most nursing homes today have commercial style elevators to enable smooth and effortless deliveries of all food items and other medical equipment to any specific floor of the home. However some of the older nursing homes especially those located in older neighborhoods lack these kind of wide elevators. This poses a difficulty in delivering food and other items to the home as well as getting it from one floor to another.

So what is the solution?

Very simple! An electric or battery powered stair climbing hand truck, these trucks weigh only about 50 lbs. with the battery and can haul up to 300 pounds. They can actually climb about 40 steps per minute and can climb a total of 300 steps per charge. They are not terribly expensive either just a little over $3000. They are manufactured by a company called Liftkar and are distributed in the US exclusively by Wesco And Magline. Wesco has the exclusive rights to the heavier duty model while Magliner has the rights to the light duty truck.

Nursing Home Sound Control Curtains

Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

Well it seemed like a good idea although we do not know if it has been implemented in any nursing homes or hospitals yet. In this  nurse article it explains how Dr. Krishan Ahuja, Regents researcher and head of the acoustics and aerodynamics branch in the Georgia Tech Research Institute’s (GTRI) Aerospace & Transportation Laboratory, has designed a unique modular system of curtains that blends aesthetics with audio privacy. They would probally be able to use MLV in the sandwich. Although it is heavy Mass Loaded Vinyl can be obtained in weights of half pound per square foot. Now how about creating a portable sound barrier curtain that the nurses can use during their break!

Lafayette Nursing Home in Trouble

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

A nursing home in Lafayette, Indiana  is in trouble. Despite being part of the town’s landscape for more than 80 years, the buildign has beenvacant for 7. The building is owned by the school district, who at one point used it for an annual haunted house. They closed the house permanently in 2003, after bat droppings made visitors ill.

The school district says the building isn’t usable. Preservationists say it should be restored. The school district says that, even if resorted, it would not serve any notable function for the school. They don’t, after all, need a nursing home at a high school.

What will happen next? Time will tell…

6 CA Nursing Home Workers Under Arrest

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

Out in California, six nursing home workers have found themselves under arrest. What they believed would be a funny prank actually turned out to be cruel form of elder abuse.

What did they do? They put cream all over several elderly patients in an attempt to make them slippery when other co-workers attempted to move them. All of the patients involved suffered from dimentia and, as such, could not object to being covered with the cream.

All of the employees involved were fired, and all have had a myriad of charges pressed against them.

Fletcher Allen Health Care Nurse Steals Narcotics

Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

The Fletcher Allen Health Care center is one of the largest hospitals in Vermont.

One day, during a normal shift, a nurse noticed that narcotics has been dispensed from the automatic machine, supposedly on behalf of a maternity ward patient. The patient, of course, had never had the medication.

Investigations led to the discovery that Traci Hull, an RN, had been stealing narcotics. The drugs she took included oxycodone, hydromorphine, and morphine. She has been charged with felony level prescription drug fraud, but has pled not guilty.

Rules, regulations, and hospital procedures around the country have made drug theft less appealing than ever for hospital employees – but it does still happen. Unfortunately, in this case, it’s now easier to identify.

$114M Verdict in Nursing Home Abuse Case

Friday, July 23rd, 2010

The other day we read a great article on the Chicago Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Blog. About 7 years ago, a 76 year old woman livingin a nursing home in Florida died. Two weeks after movign into the IHS facility in Auburndale, Florida, Juanita Jackson suffered a fall, breaking her arm and causing severe head injuries.

Juanita Jackson remained in the facility for only a few months. By May, she had several bedsores and showed signs of malnurishment. Her family removed her from the home but she died early in July.

The family alledges that Ms. Jackson had always been at risk of falling and that the nursing home did not take proper precautions. They contend that Juanita Jackson would not have died had she not fallen and suffered from the subsequent health issues associated with that fall.

Nursing home negligence is a huge deal, and fall risks are not uncommon. Whether or not the nursing home was at fault is no longer a question, as the $114 million judgement clearly showcases.