Panorama BBC 30.4.2014

Response to highlighted poor care in care homes;”a woman slapped by a care worker who had previously been complained about for her poor attitude towards residents
the same woman, who has dementia and is partially paralysed after a stroke, was also repeatedly mocked and taunted by other care workers
cries for assistance from a resident suffering a terminal illness ignored as she sought help for the toilet, and her call bell for assistance left unplugged on one occasion
a resident bed-ridden with a chronic illness left lying in his own excrement after two care workers turned off his call bell without assisting him” (Holt 2014)

This situation is one often found in America, where, according to the 2013 Nursing Home Report Card, “1 in 5 nursing homes abused, neglected, or mistreated residents in almost half of all states” … about which Rich McIver (attorney) commented: “The quality of the care provided at nursing homes corresponds directly to the financial incentives faced by the ownership of nursing home chains” … “Because a nursing home’s revenue is fixed … they can only increase their profits by reducing their costs, which means cutting on the quality of the care they provide” … “Most times, this means cutting staff or hiring lower quality staff because they cut their staff’s pay. The only limitation on how far a corporate nursing home is willing to cut, comes in the form of government penalties for violations and the costs of lawsuits when their care falls below certain standards”. The majority of care homes in the UK are operated by debt-ridden private equity firms. The contention that abusive care is a minority occurrence can only come from someone speaking from the Ivory Tower of the CQC, who has never worked in a profit-comes-first hell hole. Put cameras in all rooms. Institute minimum staffing levels, and fine heavily if they are not met. Make it mandatory to report all abuse directly to the police. These things, of course, will not happen. Our corporation loving politicians will not regulate the ‘market’ in care.

lenin nightingale


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