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Moving residents to other rooms

July 26, 2010
by Kathleen Mears
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Four residents from my unit were moved to the other unit a few days ago. It seems strange not to see those folks sitting in the lounge before and after breakfast. A couple of them did not say very much. I suppose cognitively a couple of them might not have been able to understand everything that was going on. Two of them had to be fed in the dining room. One had been tube fed until recently when he was transitioned to a puréed diet. We got used to these quiet residents and their presence is missed. Now they are on the other unit and we will rarely see them. Some will still come to our dining room for meals. But other than that we will have little contact with them.

It always makes me feel sad when residents have to move to another room. I wonder if what remains of their memory will never comprehend the move and they will not remember where their new room is. Then they will be frustrated being constantly redirected to it. I wonder if they feel confused and bothersome in the building that is their home.

I know that consideration and family approval are necessary for these moves. But sometimes I wonder why they have to be done. I do not think it will ever be possible to get the exact living arrangement that is good for all. This facility is a microcosm of society. As such, none of us will ever have exactly what we want. I think those who are cognitively able can probably adjust easier than those who are not. But I do not think moving residents is productive unless it is felt it will definitely make their lives better.

There have always been changes here. New ideas will come to the fore and management will feel that they need to be tried. I remember many changes that have occurred over my 14-plus years here. I certainly hope that changes will be documented so that those with less than beneficial results will not be tried again in the future.

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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...