Getting Mom or Dad Out of the Nursing Home

Employ "Operation Breakout from the Nursing Home" to spring your Mom out of the old folk's home or liberate your Dad from convalescence care.

By Clare Absher RN, BSN  

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Whether your parents have endured a short stay or an extended visit in a nursing home, it is not uncommon for them to vehemently protest staying any longer than necessary. You may hear comments such as: "I hate it here" "I'm desperately home-sick" "They treat me terrible" or still worse "I'm going to die alone in here." It should come as no surprise that institutional living is often an unsolicited, if not dreaded, lifestyle for many of our parents. Furthermore, nursing home placement may have been forced upon our elderly loved ones as a result of circumstances that are no longer relevant.

Very likely your family will view a breakout from the old folk's home in a positive light with regard to your parents' overall welfare. Our elderly loved ones' convincing claim that returning home will bring them great joy can drive us to facilitate this move. The question is whether it is realistic for your parent(s) to age in place, how to ensure they are safe and secure in their home, and how to elude re-admission to the nursing home.

Utilize our Three Phase Planning Guide to help your family plot the course for nursing home liberation. Deliberate, strategize, prioritize, and hopefully opt to commence with "Operation Breakout from the Nursing Home."

My nursing experience, along with my own family caregiving experiences, lends me to advise families that mindful decision making and thorough preparation is key to making this transition successful. Attention to details are fundamental when adapting the home with safety equipment to enhance mobility, prevent falls, and provide security. Undertaking major modifications such as installing ramps, elevators, walk-in showers and widening doorways may be necessary prior to your folk's "escape" back to their home. Arranging in-home care services in advance is paramount, with full acceptance and responsibility of hiring outside help on the part of your parents. Long-term financial planning must include budgeting for home ownership costs and in-home care services.

Phase 1: Meet with Your Family

Phase 2: Prepare the Home Environment

Phase 3: Arrange In-Home Care and Explore Community Resources

Clare Absher RN BSN
 

About the Author

Clare Absher is a Registered Nurse with over 37 years of experience. Most of her experience is in home health serving as a caregiver, educator, patient advocate, and liaison between families and community resources. She has also worked in acute care, assisted living, and retirement settings. She is passionate about helping families care for their elderly loved ones at home.



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