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A fight for dignity

I thought this morning I would draw your attention to this article in the paper today about a woman’s personal experience with a long-term daycare facility that her father lived at for the last couple years of his life. She admittedly described some of the worse-case scenarios that happened with her dad, but her point is that the problem isnt isolated, and she urges people to fight to improve our long-term care system for senior citizens in this country.

As she says: Our parents worked hard to bring us to where we are today. At the very least, they deserve to be treated with dignity and respect.

Our grandparents as well.

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3 comments to A fight for dignity

  • My Father died two weeks ago today while in a long-term care facility. He had excellent care but it’s true that finding those places with the best care is hard to find. And the waiting lists tend to be very long.

    My Father was only there for 3 months but in that time, the nursing care was exceptional, as were all the support staff. Due to his new living arrangements, I received something in the mail from them about writing to my local MP regarding older long-term care facilities. It seems there is a push on to close them down. This is a tragedy because we don’t have enough facilities as it is. What I did, to ensure my Dad had excellent care, was not to visit the facilities first. I researched their government reports online at healthline.ca. Then I chose my top 3, and then I visited them. It turns out, my top choice was correct.

    I did write to my local Liberal MP about the issue with older facilities, requesting a need for more funding to allow them to upgrade, rather than close them down. Some are truly awful and should be shut, but they need to be reviewed on a case by case basis. The government reports are available free online for anyone to see which places are most often cited for problems. All the government needs to do is start there.

  • I agree… as the woman said in her article, we shouldn’t be trying to fix our long-term care facilities just for our own parents and grandparents, but with an eye to the fact we may end up in 1 one day ourselves, and it would be nice to be treated with some respect and dignity if and when we are.

  • My heart goes out to that woman. There certainly are homes as bad as that — I’ve seen them. There are homes that are better, but none good enough, imho, which is why some of us quit working in order to spend as much time as possible contributing to the care of our loved ones ourselves.

    She is right as well that most people don’t want to pay attention to these problems until they are affected personally, which means that we are being picked off one by one — which also means that we are not making enough of a political impact.

    Supporting good advocacy groups (like the Alzheimer Society) is helpful. But we need more. We all have to begin speaking up.

    If I may add a personal note, Scott: I know what it’s like to fear for a beloved parent or grandparent, but whenever these stories are cast in that context alone, the context of an older generation, I wince. That older generation is here among you. The loved ones we are caring for are our partners and our siblings. The lives we are losing are not distanced from us at all by the generations: we are looking at ourselves and our own futures.

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