Family and Friends
Staff will communicate with the primary contact person listed within the resident's chart regarding a change in the resident health condition, care conferences, outings and other resident related issues.
It is important for the person who is the primary contact to keep other family members informed.
Family and friends can enhance the quality of life of the resident in many ways:
- Take an active interest and participate in assessing, planning, providing, monitoring and evaluating the Resident's care;
- Visit frequently
- Bring young children for visits (Residents love them!)
- Check and replenish wardrobe and toiletries regularly, ask nursing staff for input;
- Respond to information-seeking letters;
- Participate in invited activities;
- Offer suggestions for improvements to care, services and the environment;
- Attend meetings or discussion groups planned for friends/families;
- Support Teas and other special events;
- Bring church bulletins, encourage church members and the clergy to visit;
- Bring a pet for a visit;
- Share a meal with your loved one;
- Discuss concerns with a Nurse, Social Worker and/or Admission Coordinator.
Visits from relatives and friends can provide this sense for the elderly.
The response from the elderly may be less noticeable with Residents who are cognitively impaired.
Visitors may feel discouraged and may even question whether their visits are beneficial.
It is very comforting for a cognitively impaired or confused person to hear a familiar voice and see a familiar face.
Making visits meaningful and pleasurable means that you are more likely to want to return.
Visiting a Resident:
- demonstrates that someone cares;
- the person feels valued;
- breaks the monotony, as there is often little communication between Residents;
- an ordinary conversation is stimulating for them, even gives them something to boast about.
Concerns related to misplaced clothing should be directed to the unit nurse who will initiate a search.
Plumbing, electrical issues should be directed to the unit nurse who will communicate with the Maintenance Department.
Menu and diet questions or concerns will be relayed to the Food Services Supervisor or Dietitian.
Financial and business concerns should be directed to the Accounts Receivable Clerk.
If you have a concern about an employee, please direct concerns to the employee’s supervisor. If you are not sure who the employee’s supervisor is, please contact the Social Worker for assistance.
Manitoba Health and the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority provide mediation assistance in matters of concern for Residents in personal care homes. The Manitoba Health phone number is: 1-888-871-6276 and the WRHA phone number is: 204-926-8067.
Don’t use baby talk. Speak respectfully.
Put yourself at eye level with the person you are speaking to.
Be flexible in your conversation and adjust to mood changes.
Validate feelings, emotions or beliefs.
Acknowledge the losses of control of routine, privacy, and identity that come with living in a personal care home.
Identify some positive factors and discuss those as well.
Touch the hand of the person you speak to.
A kiss on the cheek.
Follow through on promises.
Develop a signal to say “good bye” or “I love you”.
If possible, plan your next visit in accordance with your loved one’s preferences.
He or she may feel more sociable at certain times of the day.
To help bring back memories of shared experiences, use pictures, verbal descriptions and real objects.