Nursing Home Blog

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Nursing Home Funding Budget Cuts

Posted on Tue, August 9, 2011 at 5:00 am

If you watch American news for even a minute you will hear about the soaring debt and budget cuts, so I dont\' know why I was surprised to learn that the U.S. Centres for Medicare and Medicaid will cut funding for nursing homes by 11.1% in 2012.  (If you are wondering why your Extendicare stocks fell - you now know why).  It will be interesting to see how nursing home owners will deal with this… Read More.

Caregivers - What to do if you need a break?

Posted on Mon, August 8, 2011 at 5:00 am

For those of you who care for an aging parent, going on vacation isn\\\'t as simple as booking a flight, packing your suitcase, and calling a taxi to take you to the airport.  Who is going to take care of your loved one?  You may want to explore the option of hiring an agency, but before you rely on an agency you have to be absolutely certain that the agency will be able to provide… Read More.

Antidepressants Linked to Falls

Posted on Thu, August 4, 2011 at 3:16 am

According to a recently published study in the Journal of Gerontology: Medical Sciences, nursing home residents had a five fold increased risk of falls if they started to take non-SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor) antidepressants (i.e., bupropion or venlafaxine) or if their dosage of this medication increased.    The risk of falls is greatest in the first two days that the senior begins taking the antidepressant (or increased dosage).  Beyond day two, the risk of falls decreases.  The… Read More.

Trauma Unit Geriatrician

Posted on Wed, August 3, 2011 at 2:16 am

I just read a very interesting article by Theresa Boyle on the about hospital trauma units and seniors.  In 2007, St. Michael\'s hospital in Toronto became the first hospital in Canada to have a geriatrician on their trauma team.  Because most seniors have chronic conditions (some have multiple chronic conditions) and take multiple medications, they are better cared for by a physician who is experienced with this age group.   The fact that 30% of patients… Read More.

Extreme Heat and the Elderly

Posted on Tue, July 19, 2011 at 3:13 am

Much of Canada is experiencing extremely high temperatures making for uncomfortable and dangerous conditions for the elderly. Because our aged loved ones are at highest risk when temperatures soar, nursing home staff MUST ensure that proper procedures are put in place (and friends and family members should ensure that this is being done).  You may not be aware that some nursing homes have no air conditioning and thus must be extra vigilant during heat alerts.  According to Public Health, our… Read More.

Nursing Home Costs Increase in Ontario

Posted on Tue, July 19, 2011 at 2:30 am

Each year, the Ministry of Health and Long-term care reviews and will, at various intervals, adjust resident copayment fees.  As of July 1, 2011, nursing home costs have increased.  A standard/basic room (otherwise known as a ward room, which means three or more beds per room) will costs $53.23 per day or $1619.08 per month.  The rate for a semi-private room (two beds per room) has increased to $61.23 per day (the daily rate of a… Read More.

See Me

Posted on Tue, July 5, 2011 at 2:00 am

This poem was written by an old woman living in a nursing home inIreland.  It was found among her things when she died.What do you see nurses, what do you see?Are you thinking when you look at me?A crabbit old woman, not very wise,Uncertain of habit, with far away eyes,Who dribbles her food and makes no replyWhen you say in a loud voice - ``I do wish you`d try.``And forever is losing a sock or… Read More.

Is it Alzheimer`s Disease?

Posted on Mon, May 2, 2011 at 5:13 pm

The following article about Alzheimer`s disease is from the Alzheimer Society`s website (  If you suspect that your loved one may have Alzheimers, please read the warning signs and speak with your physician. Alzheimer`s disease is a progressive, degenerative disease. Symptoms include loss of memory, difficulty with day-to-day tasks, and changes in mood and behaviour. People may think these symptoms are part of normal aging but they aren`t. It is important to see a doctor… Read More.

Overmedicating Nursing Home Residents

Posted on Thu, March 24, 2011 at 2:54 am

A study based in the United States found that many nursing home residents were prescribed unnecessary antibiotics for a suspected Urinary Tract Infection.  This study begs a more general question:  Are nursing home residents overmedicated?  I believe that many physicians who care for nursing home residents are less focused on rehabilitating residents and more focused on treating symptoms  The long-term result  of this practice is that residents never stop taking medication.  Each nursing home`s pharmaceutical company… Read More.

Elder Abuse

Posted on Thu, March 17, 2011 at 2:55 am

I will never understand why, or how, someone can abuse anyone, but especially someone who is vulnerable, such as an elderly person.  Older adults are supposed to be respected, not abused.  But elder abuse is a sad reality.  According to Statistics Canada, in 2005 there were 160 violent cases for every 100,000 seniors.  The reported cases of abuse against seniors increased by 20% from 1998 to 2005.   More often than not, the abuser is the adult child.  Older adults… Read More.

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