Report reveals the plight of neglected, malnourished elderly

  1. Shameful! Damning report reveals the plight of neglected, malnourished elderly ...
    Daily Mail
    The report is based on evidence from 13,000 CQC inspections carried out last year. Inspectors found examples of nurses failing to close curtains when they were carrying out personal tasks, talking over patients and speaking to them in a 'condescending or dismissive way'.

    Many hospitals had call bells out of reach, or their staff failed to answer them in a reasonable time.
    Many also failed to identify patients who were malnourished or to ensure they had food if they missed a set meal time because they were having an operation.

    Short-staffing at almost a quarter of nursing homes and 16 per cent of hospitals was putting the quality and safety of care at risk, it found. Not having enough staff was a 'major ingredient' of poor care.

    Where 'staff are stretched' standards slip, the report said.

    Fourteen per cent of hospitals and no fewer than 33 per cent of nursing homes failed to give and keep medicines correctly. Three quarters of nursing homes failed to train staff correctly. Eleven per cent of hospitals failed to ensure decent cleanliness and infection control
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    About NRSKarenRN, BSN, RN Moderator

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  3. by   skylark
    No surprises there.

    What is really sad is that malnourishment in the elderly is not new, and it was being flagged up when i was a student in the 1980s.

    And my personal feeling is that a lot of the problem stems from changes in the nursing structure. Making RN a degree profession has led to nurses delegating tasks to HCAs, without really supervising the consequences.
    Who notices if a patient is not eating?
    whose job is it to feed them?
    Who documents their oral intake?

    Just sayin . . . . .
  4. by   Silverdragon102
    Have to agree skylark, remember this being brought up in the 80's and I also think staffing has a big issue with the RN having so much to do these day with paperwork thrown at them and just not enough trained staff on the wards to monitor. Also wonder if doing away with Enrolled Nurses didn't help because at least they could do things like this leaving the RN to the paperwork and they were accountable unlike HCA's
  5. by   skylark
    When I began training, I wanted to be an EN because it seemed to me that they were the REAL nurses, and the RNs were the managers. That was my perspective, (I was a nursing auxiliary for a couple of years before training), and it seems that losing the ENs was a bad move, for the reasons you stated.
    RNs don't tend to get involved in hands-on 'tasks', and those that do, the HCAs, don't have either the knowledge base or the accountability to complete the task safely.

    Washing patients is another example. Its an opportunity for a trained nurse to examine pressure areas, skin hydration, patient mobility and dexterity, etc, as well as actually talking to them!
    But its become a task given to an HCA, and they are simply not in a position to make these sort of assessments, they just complete task.

    I was in the UK this summer, and worked agency in a medical assessment ward. The shower rooms were used as storage for zimmers, etc, and each patient was given a cardboard bedpan of warm water and hibiscrub to wash with at the bedside.

    I kicked off, removed the zimmers, and took each elderly patient to the bathroom.

    Needless to say I was not exactly popular with the other RNs. They did not see patient care as their job and got mad at me.