Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Tough Question: Evidence Demonstrates Potential for Unsatisfactory Care in Nursing Homes, So Why Expect Better Care at Home?

Howard Gleckman at Forbes writes about the elephant in the room of home and community-based care.  Will it really be better than the care in a nursing home?

Read "We All Want to Live at Home in Old Age, But Know Nothing About the Quality of Care We'll Get There."

Hat tip to ElderLawGuy Jeff Marshall for pointing the way to this thoughtful piece.

Health Care/Long Term Care, Housing | Permalink

TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Tough Question: Evidence Demonstrates Potential for Unsatisfactory Care in Nursing Homes, So Why Expect Better Care at Home?:


The article cited above had a bullet point: “Government is pushing Medicaid-based care out of nursing facilities and into the community.” Maybe that is what is behind the message I’ve heard: that it’s more cost-effective to have people stay in their own homes. This is music to some people’s ears …. but this music might be very wishful and inaccurate thinking. Most everyone dreads the thought of being in a nursing home or putting a parent in one, so staying at home sounds good to them. Given what the message the government is promulgating, the adult children may think, “Oh good. I won’t have to put Mom in a nursing home. We’ll just get Medicaid at-home care. After all, they’re saying that’s less expensive than the touted $7,000/month that nursing homes charge.” But are these people (the elderly and their adult offspring) envisioning a home health aide being there around the clock? Or, do they realize it might mean an aide stopping by for 20 minutes three times a day to 1) change a diaper or 2) bathe or 3) dress for the day 4) bring a packaged meal? How will the geography and distances be covered by aides when the Baby Boomer generation becomes the generation needing long term care?
At least in a nursing home there is other stimulation going on --- piano players, church choirs, bingo games, whether a patient partakes or not. Lots of visitors to a nursing home are put off by seeing residents just sitting in hallway chairs or always sleeping in their beds or crying out for attention. Wouldn’t these same individuals needing care do the same thing inside their home, confined by 4 walls? At least the care and treatment received in a nursing home environment can be witnessed. For someone confined to his/her home, who knows what’s happening behind that closed door?

Posted by: Jennifer Young | Mar 26, 2014 9:10:10 AM

Post a comment