Lets Treat Our Seniors With Dignity
One of the things I always promised to my Mother was that she would never have to live in a seniors residence. Fortunately it was promise I was able to keep. Here in Ontario and I'm sure in a lot of other places, unless you have a lot of money and hire private caregivers, the standard of care is pretty poor. One of the very first things they do is put these poor people in diapers, even if they are not incontinent. The reason for this to save time and money. It takes older people longer to negotiate themselves and their walkers and canes to the loo and generally they need assistance to get there. Diapers are easier.
The problem is this; they do not change them very frequently, in fact the standard is that the diaper has to have a minimum of 2000 ml of liquid to qualify for a change. The new ones come with a little blue strip that shows how much liquid has been absorbed. This is friggin bizarre.
This is not only done in nursing homes, it is also as I discovered pretty standard practice in hospitals with senior patients and they did the very same thing to my Mother over my objections. My Mother was not incontinent prior to her what was to be her last hospital stay. When I asked to have her changed and cleaned up I was told she'd have to wait they were busy. They expected her to eat her meals in that condition.
So George Smitherman, the Minister of Health for Ontario is considering wearing one of these diapers and testing them himself to see how uncomfortable they are. I would suggest that he fill them up with water first and see how easy it is to walk around in one without it falling down. I mean, that becomes a pretty heavy diaper. He is making a mockery of this horrible problem and he's been forced to apologize. Doesn't solve the problem though.
He should be doing a lot more than testing diapers, he should be ensuring that our most vulnerable citizens receive proper care and personal support. No one, absolutely no one in our society should be sitting eating their dinner in a dirty diaper. That's not my Ontario and not my Canada.
A very good friend of mine always tells me that when she gets to be that old, she'll just go play in the traffic. Almost seems preferable to a nursing home somehow...