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When residents move out, who fills their place?

March 5, 2012
by Kathleen Mears
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Last Monday, three residents who have been here longer than me were scheduled to move to another nursing home owned by the same company. All three are Medicaid residents. They are also ambulatory and feed themselves, but require some assistance with hygiene and need to be watched because of their behaviors.

Tina (pseudonym) and Leroy (pseudonym) are known for taking things from residents’ rooms. Some say they are kleptomaniacs and unable to control that behavior, and there was no way staff could watch them continuously. It is hoped that fewer things will disappear now that they are gone.

Billy (pseudonym), the third resident scheduled to move, acts out when upset. He beats long and hard on his room's walls. That puts the next door residents on edge and the electrical wiring in jeopardy.

Tina and Leroy are smokers and I have heard the facility where they are going is non-smoking. That may cause them some anxiety unless they quit. Over time, some residents here have stopped because the cost of cigarettes used up their monthly spending allowance.

The day of their move Billy and Tina were standing by the front door talking about what the new facility may be like. Leroy also seemed ready to leave. However, he changed his mind at the last minute.

During the week, the social services director talked to each resident in the nursing home and asked if any of us would like to move to the other facility. One male resident agreed, and on Wednesday morning, Leroy decided to move as well.

The aides are a little concerned about what type of residents will replace those who left. It will seem strange not seeing them in the hallway anymore, but I do hope they find contentment in their new home.

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Kathleen Mears

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Kathleen Mears has been a nursing home resident in Ohio for 20 years. She is an incomplete...