Survey Details the Good and Bad of Life for Seniors in Residential Care
Prince George, B.C., – The Seniors Advocate, Isobel Mackenzie has released the results of a province wide survey of residents in subsidized residential care, and the results show there are positives, and some areas for improvement.
The survey, which took nearly a year to complete, is the first of its kind in Canada says Mackenzie and involved 10 thousand residents and 10 thousand family members. “What they are telling us is that while some are satisfied in some areas, overall, we need to be doing better, and in some cases, much better in ensuring the needs of residents are met.” .
Key positive responses from the survey include:
• 50% of residents rated the overall quality of the care home as very good or excellent with 83% of residents believing the staff know what they are doing
• 88% of family members report being involved in decisions about the care of their loved one
• 80% of residents indicate they get the services they need
• 65% of family members rated the facility 8 or higher when 10 was the highest possible score
• 88% feel safe in the care home
• 86% of residents feel staff treat them with respect
• 88% of family members or most frequent visitors report that facility staff addresses their concerns always or most of the time
Key areas where residents and families said improvements are needed include:
• 62% of residents say they do not get to bathe or shower as often as they want
• One in four residents say they sometimes, rarely or never get help to the toilet when needed and 25% of residents report staff tries to relieve physical discomfort sometimes, rarely or never
• More than one-third of residents report they are not consistently getting the help they need at mealtimes
• Almost 46% of residents report there is no one living in the facility that they consider a close friend and 45% report there is no one for them to do things with
• Less than half (46%) of residents say staff regularly make time for friendly conversation
• 49% of residents only sometimes, rarely or never have the same care aide on most weekdays
• 4 out of 10 residents living in residential care do not want to be there
• Only 57% of residents report that the care facility regularly feels like home
“We have to remember that for people who are living in residential care, this is their home, and very likely their last home,” said Mackenzie. “We need to do all that we can to ensure those who live there, have the very best experience possible.”
The report makes eight recommendations, including; increased care hours, proper staffing levels, more flexibility of how and when care is delivered, increasing training focused on the emotional needs of residents, and increasing the range of activities provided in residential care facilities.