A California man is suing an assisted living facility for the wrongful death of his 89 year old mother. He claims that the facility allowed his mother to become exposed to extreme heat many times by leaving her outdoors in an unshaded area. The facility received a citation from the state’s department of social services for neglect. The facility is appealing the citation, but the suit has not been overturned.
Assisted Living Concerns
Much like nursing home residents, those living in assisted living may be at a higher risk for abuse. The constant contact with overworked staff is one contributor to abuse in nursing homes, but assisted living residents do not always have the same extended contact.
One of the challenges that many seniors face in terms of limited mobility is discovering the best adaptive devices. Most of us are familiar with “the grabber,” a mechanical claw gadget that helps folks reach things on the higher shelves in their home. This is exactly the type of device that some people need. There are others, however, that can and do many people’s lives easier and, in fact, lead to greater independence.
There are times when a facility must close, due to various reasons. Closings can stem from code or building violations, abuse allegations, or a lack of funding. What happens to the residents that suddenly find their home is no longer home?
You may have heard of code violations in reference to assisted living facilities in the media. There have been many recent stories of facilities receiving code violations or citations that result in the closing of the facility. Sometimes the owner must give up ownership due to code violations that are not corrected or possibly the facility has been a repeat offender.
Senior citizens and mental illness has always been a hot button issue. Many feel that assisted living facilities are being overburdened with the task of caring for large numbers of mentally ill patients. What is often unsaid, however, is the benefits that those with mental illnesses receive from moving into one of these facilities.
A new piece of legislation was passed in Michigan this year (2012) that will help assisted living residents breathe easier. The new legislation will make it easier for homeowners that are living in a facility to receive the principal residence tax exemption. This exemption is for their primary home.
Across the United States communities are protesting the addition of assisted living facilities to their neighborhoods. California, Michigan, New Jersey, and other states have had a surge of such protests. Why is this? Do people in these communities dislike the elderly or retired?
In recent times the state of Texas has had more than its’ share of facility staff accused of abuse. More and more facilities are being found in violation of state and federal health codes. We have to wonder – what is going on with Texas?
There are many types of building or code violations. Often the violations occur due to neglect, though a violation may happen due to bad construction. A contractor hired by an assisted living company should follow all local codes. Sometimes the opposite happens – the lowest bidder takes a job and delivers a bad product.
The topic of unmarried couples has been brought into the media spotlight over the past several years. The couples in question can be gay or straight, it seems that the marriage institution has been a hot debate. With the upcoming Presidential election and fight for the White House in full swing, marriage is an important topic.
Over the past year many complaints and convictions of elder abuse have come out of states like South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, and Florida. Is it possible that the southern states have more abusive staff in assisted living facilities than in other parts of the country?
The last thing that any of us wish to think about is our eventual death. We spend most of our lives thinking that we will go on and on, forever. Wouldn’t it be nice if we did? Since we can’t live forever, we can make sure that our wishes go beyond our demise.
A man in Pasadena, CA was arrested in early May for killing his 61 year old assisted living roommate. The accused murderer was a resident at an assisted living facility for residents with mental illness. Paul Lopez, 38, of Pasadena was roommate to George Shatford, 61.
With all of this talk about green living and organic food, you may just wonder- is organic food important for older people? Sometimes the higher cost of organic foods can be prohibitive for people on set incomes, like social security, disability, or a small pension. Is the higher cost justifiable?
Seniors citizens often find that their lives become boring. Not long ago, I was speaking with my grandmother. She lives alone and the one year anniversary of my grandfather’s death came in March, not long after the one year anniversary of my mother’s death who was my grandmother’s oldest child. I knew my grandmother was feeling lonely.
In 2008 the real estate ‘bubble’ burst. People all around the United States lost their jobs, 401K’s, and their life savings. During this time the US fell into serious economic turmoil. Today, 2012, we are beginning to see a slight recovery.
Very recently (Spring 2012), there were severe outbreaks of influenza in Ireland and other parts of Europe. The U.S. seemed to have been spared until May 2012. Sporadic cases of influenza were reported around the U.S. with the highest concentrations in New York State and Alaska.
In Florida an assisted living resident can face eviction for little to no reason at all. The state has no real laws concerning how facilities should define their evictions. A resident need only to receive a 45 day notice of eviction, then they must move.
Senior citizens today are not what you would expect. In fact, most senior citizens do not consider themselves to even be seniors! Have you ever found yourself being offered a discount based on your age and thought, “Wait a minute! I’m not old.”
Do you know how clean the assisted living facility that your loved one is living in really is? You may think it is clean, but are you sure? Just because a facility looks okay at first glance does not mean that there are not other, deeper, hidden problems. Sometimes…creepy crawly problems.
When a resident in an assisted living facility needs to go into a hospital for surgery, it is a major event. The resident may be hurting and scared during discharge, unable to keep up with all of the explanations, directions, and paperwork. A resident that is due to leave the hospital should ask for a patient advocate present. Patient advocates can help the resident understand everything that is being explained and help them know what questions to ask.
Though it may seem hard to believe, and even sometimes somewhat strange for younger people to consider, the fun doesn’t always stop with advanced age. Recent studies indicate that sexual activity, drinking and even sexually transmitted diseases are on the rise in assisted living facilities.
Latoya Verlene Drayton, a thirty year old medication aide at an assisted living facility in Shallotte, North Carolina was arrested in April and charged with assaulting a resident.
Quality of life is a term that is frequently used when people talk about assisted living. If you visit any facility more than once, you will probably hear the phrase mentioned often. Quality of life is spoken about in brochures, senior citizen awareness websites, and in meetings held with family members. But, how do you know that an assisted living facility is really creating a better quality of life for residents and not just using the phrase as a marketing term?
With the number of residents that have dementia and have wandered away from assisted living facilities in the past several years, you may wonder – is assisted living a safe option for residents with dementia? The answer is: sometimes.
In December 2001 an inspector from the Department of Health and Human Services addressed Congress. His concern was the over-use of medication in assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and other medical care centers on residents and patients. The use is usually referred to as chemical restraints.