Respecting older people means recognizing their diverse care needsSeptember 25, 20182 min read
Assisted living is an essential part of the care continuum, offering respite for individuals and families seeking support. But what happens when the place you call home decides they can no longer provide the services you require?
According to the article “Kicked out of assisted living: What you can do,” evictions are the number one complaint related to assisted living. These complaints often go unanswered, and take place in facilities which are not required to document their attempts to provide care that could keep a person in the facility they currently reside in.
In the United States, for example, assisted living facilities are not governed by the same federal legislation as nursing homes, where an established appeal process exists for evictions, and requires residents who need to be rehomed to have arranged relocation to another setting. Prof. Chris Poulos is an expert in care of older people, who can speak to the differences in assisted living versus nursing homes.
The lack of procedure on the part of assisted living facilities draws attention to the deficits that exist in care for older people, and the lack of consideration of diverse circumstances in creating procedures that affect older people. What’s more, uncontestable evictions highlight the lack of respect and understanding certain companies have for older people and family caregivers.
The article suggests that families thoroughly investigate facilities before investing in them; however, the duty is also on assisted living facilities to ensure that they are providing promised care to residents and respectfully discussing care with residents and families if need. It’s time we start shifting the dialogue of responsibility on to care providers and start treating our older people with respect, worthy of high-quality care. Dr. Anne Martin-Matthews is an expert in the provision of health and social care for older people who can speak to the particulars of assisted living.
Prof. Chris Poulos Head of Research & Aged Care Clinical Services
Associate Professor Chris Poulos is the Foundation Hammond Chair of Positive Ageing and Care with the University of New South Wales
Dr. Anne Martin-Matthews Professor, Ageing and Lifecourse
Anne Martin-Matthews' current research focuses on two areas of inquiry in the sociology of aging.