Good News Story: Encouraging residents to accept the care they deserve

Sue discusses the difficulty some residents experience in accepting the care they deserve in aged care facilities. She tells us a story of how she helped one resident break past this barrier to receive remarkable care. Watch the video or read the transcript below.

Sue: All right, I met a lady called Mary. Mary was not well, she was suffering from breathlessness. She could not get to the shower by herself, she struggled with her ADLs, she was always complaining, staff were always complaining that she was complaining and I didn’t know what to do with Mary.

I suggested to Mary that maybe she needed some oxygen to help her breathlessness and she said that oh I don’t think I need that. And I said, maybe you do, just try it. Just give it a chance and try it, and she did.

I also suggested to Mary that she deserved to have care from staff that were here to care for her and she needed to allow staff to let them help her. So she didn’t struggle to do what she had to do and then be buggered for the rest of the day… that’s not a good word to use, “bugger.”

Pete: Was she buggered?

Sue: She was buggered, every time she went to the shower, she just… the rest of the day was nothing for her. She sat in her chair, she was not able to do anything. Anyway, we spoke to the doctors, we spoke to the staff. We got her some oxygen, we got her staff assistance. She was very reluctant to take the staff assistance because she thought she had to do it all by herself. I convinced her she deserved to have that and she let the staff assist her.

When I first met Mary, she sat in her armchair in her room all day. She did not get dressed in day clothes, she wore nighties and she just thought that she wasn’t worth anything. After about five weeks, she had the oxygen therapy pre, during and post ADLs. She had it as she needed it, she had it concentrated in her room.

She had better pain management also and on the last day at the facility I saw her with her hair all done from the hairdresser, make-up, dressed in her day clothes and sitting in the coffee shop with a smile on her face. So yeah, I think I made a difference.

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