Having a loved one in a nursing home may not be what you hoped for or expected, but it can be the best place for them to receive the care they require.
However, you can still advocate for their needs if you feel changes are necessary. This could be the case if you are worried that your loved one is not receiving proper care or if adjustments are required. The following are some tips for talking to facility staff and others as an advocate.
Speak up early
You do not need to wait until your loved one’s health declines, or something goes seriously wrong to address care concerns or changes with staff members. As soon as an issue arises, you can speak up.
When you do so early, you can minimize any discomfort or pain your loved one is feeling. Further, it can reinforce the fact that someone is watching out for the resident.
That said, it is crucial to manage your expectations. If a situation is trivial or incidental, it may not warrant discussion or criticism.
It can be enormously upsetting to feel like staff members are not taking care of your loved one properly. However, it is still important to be respectful when approaching them to discuss adjustments to their practices.
To improve the chances of having a productive discussion, start with acknowledging what is working. It can also help recognize the efforts staff members may already be making to care for your loved one, and the challenges they often face.
Talk to the right people
Talking to someone about your concerns if they cannot or will not do anything to impose the requested changes can be ineffective. You must speak with the right people to make your wishes heard.
You can start with the worker or workers who have daily interactions with your loved one. If that is not realistic or productive, you can bring your concerns to a supervisor. If further help is needed, you may want to reach out to facility administrators.
If you still have concerns that a facility is not able or willing to make changes to meet your loved one’s needs, legal action may be something to consider.