Decisions For Elderly Home Care}

Submitted by: Adriana Notton

In the early 1900s, elderly who were unable to care for themselves, became a product of an Almshouse, or a poor farm. The poor farms began as a place to house paupers who were caught in the act of stealing. Eventually the under privileged were placed in the same facilities with those who had stolen. The poor farms were improperly furnished for elderly home care and many of the old people died due to unfavorable conditions and poor nutrition.

In the 1930s President Roosevelt signed a bill into action for the elderly to begin receiving Social Security, those who were already registered into the homes for the indigent would not, be eligible for the payments. Soon after payments began for those who were eligible, homes began opening to supply better treatment to the older folks. The proprietors took the checks from the elderly to pay for their upkeep.

In the fifties, the government stepped in and ordered that the homes were not to take the Social Security payments from the residents, leaving them with nothing. However, the care did not change, and the elderly fell at the mercy of the government.

In the Sixties, a law was passed that prohibited the low level of care people were receiving in nursing homes. They also stopped the fraudulent activities taking place in the majority of homes across the nation.

The nursing homes are not longer a welfare source who provides care to the elderly and strips them of their lives earnings. They are at present considered to be a part of the health care system, and must follow the same standards as hospitals are required to do.

The government has of recent years, restricted the homes from taking advantage of the patients income. The facilities are only permitted a percentage of the gross earnings. However, many of the nursing homes simply raise their prices for rooms in order to obtain more capitol.

Modern technology, therapy rooms, doctors office on the grounds and beautiful landscaped areas for the patients view. Yet, behind the entrance doors, some of the same treatment given to patients on the poor farms happen today. Malnutrition and abuse rank among the highest degree in homes across the country. Patients are afraid to speak out for fear of more abuse. The homes are understaffed generally, the caregivers are tired and overworked, and often take their revenge out on the patients.

For the elderly to remain in their own homes often times is impossible. For their own safety they require around the clock care. It is often difficult to utilize family to administer care, as usually the task falls solely on one family member who eventually becomes overly stressed. Around the clock professionals cannot be afforded for many, thus, the nursing home seems the only answer. Elderly home care is a very important issue. The older generation who once labored and made a way in life, now needs proper care and attention. Often times placing them in a care facility is the only resource, but many are placed in such places and forgotten.

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