Assisted Living has faced a metastasizing crisis for the past 20 years. Geriatric Care Managers can help. This calamity in care has been dramatically documented in Pro Publica’s Elderly at Risk and Haphazardly Protected
In 2013 CANR ( California Advocates for Nursing Homes Residents ) released a report “ Residential Care in California,” Unsafe, Unregulated and Unaccountable Among other staggering findings, they documented infrequent and inadequate state inspections to ensure safe or good care CANR also found that weak penalties for poor or dangerous care- left zero incentive to the facilities to improve care. They kept delivering the same sometimes life-threatening care to elders.
A 2019 American Society on Aging report, cited the perfect storm that brought this accelerating crisis toAssisted Living residents. Americans desire to age in place and not die in a nursing home coupled with a huge increase in private sector expansion in Assisted Living all over the US were both a big factor. These two causes were amplified, according to ASA, by facilities not being covered by Medicare, thus not having the federal oversight and requirements of the feds.
Among the major complaints that families themselves face is poor or no medications management, patients not being encouraged to participate in activities or not enough activities or both, residents not being bathed as often as is needed, and animosity between families and staff members for family members showing up unannounced or being micromanagers
How can geriatric care management help this crisis?
- GCM can monitor the care of an older person frequently (every week, every other week-) compensating for the long intervals between state inspectors visits already cited as a problem. This is especially helpful for long distance care providers.
- GCM can monitor personal care like bathing grooming getting to necessary Dr.s appointments and work with facility and family to make sure this happens.
- Geriatric care managers will do a one to one assessment of the care of the older person in the Assisted Living then find a solution to any problems they find and implement it making sure that problems are solved before a crisis
- If they find poor care of patients in the Assisted living they are mandated reporters and will immediately report the abusive problems to Adult Protective Services.
- Geriatric Care Management can set up or monitor medications.
- Geriatric Care managers will do a Quality of Life assessment for elders who are not engaging in activities and find what activity within the Assisted Living or in the community if the facility has a poor activity program. They can engage the older person by hiring a Concierge Companion to engage the older person in the activity.
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