When I think of this special Holiday Season I think of baking, cider, carols, warm fires and events with friends.
But imagine if you will, a for profit nursing home where seasoned nurses understandably request the Holidays off to spend time with family, and so new, perhaps under-trained, perhaps over-worked nurses are provided by outside staffing companies to provide daily care for your loved ones in long term care facilities.
Without a base understanding of what you loved one needs, or what his or her health condition is typically, significant changes of condition can be missed. Medications can be mismanaged. Patients can suffer and worse, permanent injuries can occur.
Our office has handled many tragic cases that occurred around the holidays: Patients eloping from the facility but staff assuming they were home with family; patients suffering wounds that go untreated, become infected and cause death; patients with unique dietary needs given foods they cannot swallow, causing death by choking.
Tis the Season, yes, but tis the season for possible mistakes as well in Virginia nursing homes.
Be a good advocate for your loved one, visit often, don’t threaten or yell at staff. Be calm, be organized and communicate about your loved ones needs. And hopefully, this will be a bright and joyful Holiday Season for all.