Abuse

Profiteering, Abuse, Neglect At US Nursing & Assisted Living Facilities

Folder: 
First Do No Harm
 
In 1968 Antony Armstrong-Jones published a documentary "Don't Count
The Candles"
regarding
the tragedy of senior confinement. An 80 year old man was taken against his
will to a nursing home.
One scene showed him wistfully looking out the window as his relative left,
one silent tear
sliding down his cheek.

 

NPR's Ina Jaffe reported in 2020 that many nursing and assisted living

institutions are running

on a shoestring, with understaffing while money is siphoned to owners'
pockets, owners who ask
Medicaid and Medicare for more money.

 

1. Excessive Profiteering B H Gray writes that 75% of these facilities are

now for-profit ones.

2. Shoestring understaffing causes neglect and sometimes premature death.

3. The lack of ethical supervision from federal agencies, owners, and managers

generates abuse from

yelling at residents to physical assaults, chemical and physical restraints.

4a. Substandard food is a complaint across the US. Some facilities are

spending as little as $6.00 a

day per person, less than prisons. At one national chain, wilted lettuce salads,

an occasional banana,

say residents, are the some total of the 'fresh food'.

4b. In many assisted living and nursing homes as well as hospitals and prisons,

kosher, halal,

vegetarian and vegan food is difficult to obtain.

5. Noise .. talking and laughing loudly during midnight shift Loud sounds

interfere with the sleep and

health of residents.

6. Constant interruptions which wake up residents who don't want breakfast or

are napping

or on the phone etc.

7. Incarceration Living behind locked doors without the freedom to leave is

imprisonment

8. Lack of privacy, including conjugal rights

9. Theft

10. Denial of the right to refuse medication or vaccines. In the last 4 years, NPR
reports, the right to refuse dangerous antipsychotic drugs has declined.

The FDA requires a label on

antipsychotics (which should be called propsychotics) warning of possible

homicides or suicides.

Many of these medications cause a permanent shaking, the medical term

abbreviated to 'tardiff'.

11. The right to refuse breakfast because residents have never eaten breakfast

or because they

want to sleep is not honored.

12. Abuse of Durable Power of Attorney

13. Premature Deaths: Poor air filtration systems, food poisoning, constant

noise and interruptions,

nurse and caregiver understaffing, abuse, isolation, and confinement

depression are some factors of

high death rates in assisted living and nursing home facilities.

14 Conflict of interest: Some facilities are owned by physicians who have a

profit motive in filling

empty rooms, turning their temporary patients into
permanent residents.

15. There are virtually no black residents in these expensive jails, despite

the fact that many
residents are on Medicaid

16 Isolation, says the AARP, is a factor in premature deaths among

residents in these facilities..

17 One doctor, a major investor in a new very expensive assisted living place,

could not fill the empty

rooms because of the cost. A wealthy older patient tried to change physicians.

He obtained a medical

power of attorney, had him institutionalized. When he worked to get an

attorney, the doctor took away
his phone, telling staff he had to learn to accept his situation, had all his mail

sent to him, and

cancelled all visitors. Whenever the resident objected to staff, he was given

an antidepressant against

his will. After 9 months, tardiff dyskinesia was apparent, a constant shaking.

The prison

had turned into a Bastille.

18. Some health authorities question the prioritization of these facilities for

resident vaccines, since

these are often the most immune challenged or those with the most preexisting

conditions, and

therefore those most likely to have lethal side effects.

19.  Well meaning relatives, relatives who want to protect the assets of a

parent or

other relatives, can kill the Spirit of another. Nursing homes

 

and assisted living places have very high rates of death.

20. Unfortunately many of these places treat residents like cattle, forcing them

to go to be weighed, to go to bingo or worship services or singalongs, ordering

them back to their rooms if they are visiting others, etc. So many lose the desire

to live, while existing in these places, that the buildings become slaughterhouses.

Profiteering and neglect
https://www.npr.org/people/2100677/ina-jaffe
Noise
 https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-1995-12-03-me-9998-story.html
http://faculty.nps.edu/rdfricke/docs/Nursing_Home_Sleep_Paper.pdf
Poor Quality Food
 https://theconversation.com/why-is-nursing-home-food-so-bad-some-spend-

just-6-08-per-person-a-day-thats-lower-than-prison-120421
Abuse
 https://journalofethics.ama-assn.org/article/statutes-combat-elder-abuse-nursing-homes/2014-05
Federal court strikes down hospital practice of refusing care

 https://www.aclu.org/press-releases/federal-court-strikes-down-trump-administration-rule-allowing-refusals-health-care
Residents Not Allowed to Refuse Dangerous Antipsychotics
 https://www.npr.org/2020/07/28/895308269/study-nursing-home-residents-not-protected-from-antipsychotic-drugs-under-trump
Nursing Home Theft
https://www.bayalarmmedical.com/medical-alert-blog/government-watchdogs-warn-about-theft-and-financial-abuse-in-senior-care-facilities/
Abuse of power of attorney\
 https://ncea.acl.gov/NCEA/media/docs/archive/Durable-PofA-Abuse-FactSheet-Criminal-Justice-Professionals.pdf
Isolation
 https://www.aarp.org/caregiving/health/info-2020/covid-isolation-killing-nursing-home-residents.html
ACLU on aspects of nursing homes
https://www.aclu.org/blog/disability-rights/integration-and-autonomy-people-disabilities/secretary-price-dont-mess-people
Violations of Privacy
 https://www.olympiainjurylawyer.com/violations-of-privacy-in-nursing-homes
Racial Disparities
 https://academic.oup.com/psychsocgerontology/article-abstract/75/9/1972/5610255?redirectedFrom=fulltext
https://www.npr.org/people/2100677/ina-jaffe

 

 

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Politics 2020

 

As real as this is, as real as this feels,

I know it won’t feel really real

until I experience something tangible

like a riot

or being told to wear a star.

 
 
Author's Notes/Comments: 

The current political climate in the United States is something to be fearful for, especially if you know your history. 

Dangerous Territory

I’ve been swimming in the deep end lately.

My head is spinning in circles.

My heart had never been so hollow on the inside.

I need to catch my breath before I do anything else stupid.

 

My work of art is an escape from uniformity.

I felt safe with you for the time being.

At the end of the week, you cuddled me

When the sergeant had an off day at work and took it out on me.

 

I let you in like I did when I meet new people.

You were happy for me when I told you I finally found love.

I wanted nothing more than a friend’s reassurance that everything will be okay.

But you in particular were a land mine waiting to explode.

 

It’s dangerous territory where you’re from as a queer.

It’s dangerous territory where I lurk on the web.

It’s dangerous territory to build a world without receiving adequate training.

It’s dangerous territory to make friends with volatile people like you.

 

I can barely read script in Delphi without misinterpreting some if not most of its passages.

My art isn’t like what you’d expect to see in other do-it-yourself or high-profile projects.

The way I write, the way I archive, and the way I distribute information is my strongest suit.

There is no way I can fulfill my goal in life alone without the help of a team that knows its stuff.

 

You didn’t have to sugarcoat your advice to fix my problems

But you didn’t have to pull more than my teeth either.

You spoke to me as if I had to know every damn trick in the book.

You pointed out where I went wrong as if I didn’t already understand it.

 

I would have welcomed your advice if you watched your language.

I would have been more considerate if we joined forces as planned.

But being friendly with you in light of this is just out of question.

You can say that I’m high all you want, but it goes to show that you’re smaller than you think.

 

It’s dangerous territory where you’re from as a queer.

It’s dangerous territory where I lurk on the web.

It’s dangerous territory to build a world without receiving adequate training.

It’s dangerous territory to make friends with volatile people like you.

 

A vagabond told me this morning that I don’t learn much from success

And boy, I sure did learn a lot about your character more than what it takes to be top dog.

I might also let it slip that you exploded in my face because your little rant was all over the place.

In that case, riddle me this, who among the two of us really needs room for improvement?

My Savior

He was both not there

And my savior

All in one

Because when he WAS around

He protected me

I was his daddy's girl

I was the most abused

He did what he could to help

Usually by doing dishes

 

Mother would get pissed

How dare a parent help

Their child

Their blood

Let them flounder 

Let them fail

So I can win at one more thing

And hold it over their head

 

He helped

But only so much so

Too timid to really fight

Too quiet to speak up

She ruled over us all

She was  the queen

If she wanted something 

You fetched it

 

And I did everything

To take care of our homes

The many apartments

We called "homes"

As soon as I was old enough

To hold a sponge

I was doing dishes 

Once I was old enough to cook

I made dinner every night

 

If not 

You faced her wrath

The anger that would spew

From her nostrils

Her eyes glowing red 

And a quick flick

Of her tongue

And the beatings

She would give

 

Once he passed

It was free for all

Into early adulthood

The abuse continued

I was conditioned

When I left

It trickled to my brother

She continued to abuse her child,

But now it wasn't me

And my father wasn't there 

To save him

Author's Notes/Comments: 

Written: 3/12/2018

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Eventually

You made me hate myself 
Made me think 
that I was
Not good enough
Not perfect enough 
To be your daughter 
I wanted to leave 
But you told me stories,
Made me terrified of the world so I stayed 
However things got worse 
And we both got in a fight 
And you kick me out in the middle of the night 
I felt broken and I was scared 
But I didn't let this destroy me
I found a place 
Where I felt comfortable and safe 
And I'm doing just fine
I still hate myself
But that's alright
Because one day
Your words will mean nothing to me
Just a thing of the past 
And I know that I will be able to say that
I am good enough
I am perfect enough 
And that I love myself

Still Standing

Still Standing

By jfarrell

 

For me,

It’s childhood rape and violent child abuse;

For some,

It’s drugs, alcohol, food, stealing;

For some,

It’s cancer, organ failure…

Horrendous stuff I can’t,

And probably, don’t want to imagine.

 

But

WE ARE STILL STANDING, STILL HERE!

Today sucked less than yesterday,

But,

You know what?

It was an improvement;

However unnoticeable, however slight it was.

We are still standing! You, me, all of us.

 

And,

It may be all you have right now!

I know 20 years I tried to kill myself;

And I’m still standing;

Lots of you are like me, despite how alone I feel;

We are all STILL standing, after all this time;

Survive? Stop standing - walk!

One step in any direction, and keep walking.

 

Fuck surviving!

I deserve;

I’ve worked and sacrificed for a life!

Not to survive.

 

 

Author's Notes/Comments: 

i deserve a life! wife, kids, and donuts! i'm sick of being a survivor, i demand more :-)

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Anniversaries

Anniversaries

By jfarrell

 

Happy birthday; happy christmas;

Poppy day; Anne Frank’s birthday;

Anniversaries are things to remember,

Sometimes, like birthdays, things to celebrate.

 

A little over 20 years ago Princess Diana died;

Where was I? waking up in a mental hospital

After my first suicide attempt;

Happy anniversary.

 

My dying before she does

Maybe the only way I can make my mum feel something,

Anything, about me;

To be fair, it’s not like she could if she wanted to.

 

Last time I saw her, 25 years ago, I told I’m never coming back

“Don’t I get a kiss. I am your mother,” she said

No, I said;

You may have given birth to me, but you’re not my mother.

 

Her spite towards me and my anger towards her;

Both need to hurt the other in self defence;

It is a vicious cycle that will continue

Long after her, or my, death.

 

Happy anniversary.

 

Author's Notes/Comments: 

yes, i have 'mommy' issues, don't we all, luckily I don't have anything to do with mine - i am the one eyed man in the land of the blind, honest, loook at this face, would it lie to you?

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Peeling the onion

Peeling the onion

By jfarrell

 

My story, my history

Will come out, layer by layer

Within my poetry

And much of it you won’t like;

“let’s leave those horrors for scary stories”

Like peeling an onion, the deeper you go

The more intense it is

 

When I started writing poetry recently

I upset my sister with it;

It’s stuff she’s got over and buried in the past;

And she is the only one of my relatives I give a stuff about;

But she doesn’t believe that

She believes I stay away out of hate and spite;

I stay away coz I seem to hurt everything I touch

I promised her I wouldn’t write personal stuff

 

Sorry, but I’ve got to break that promise

I write for me, I have to write my story

And I have to write it my way

You can choose to not read

But you cannot tell me not to write;

You found your peace;

I’m still searching for mine.

I need to peel this onion.

 

A dream last night

A dream last night

By jfarrell

 

 

 

I dreamt, last night, that my mum had died;

I wonder if it’s prophetic,

The way some dreams are;

And I should be ashamed I feel no sadness, no loss.

 

I got taken into care when I was 11;

(“ and you probably deserved it; only thugs, feral children

And criminals end up in care; you probably deserved it”);

Is the unspoken accusation I hear, all my life.

 

My ‘loving, responsible’ mother

Poured a bottle of vodka down my 8 year old sister’s throat;

Then dumped her, unconscious, on the outside stairs,

When she collapsed.

 

I bet, when my nan and uncle were told about us going into care

There was no mention of alcohol;

I was always the scapegoat;

I was always to blame, every bad was my fault.

 

Hearing that my dad had died, did not release me from the pain;

I doubt my mum’s death will either;

And, 25 years from now I will still be cursing her;

As I do my father, 25 years dead now.

 

Author's Notes/Comments: 

i've had many dreams, i'd describe as prophetic, ie in a sense they came true  - but i've never dreamed about my mother dying, though i've fantasized about it, often - does that make me an evil and wicked person, or just the same as everyone else alive?