Shortage Caregiver, in nursing homes are the place where we expect quality medical services as well as the comfort of home for our elderly. Especially for those that offers long-term care (LTC). Aged people need everyday help in their “activities for daily living”. Care providers play a very important role in their lives
However, LTC facilities at present are facing a very serious issue about staffing. Reports showed that there was not enough staff to assist the residents in their needs to go to the bathroom, in getting dressed, bathing, eating and even to take their medications. It is not a very pleasant situation for an elderly to often wait 30 minutes or more to get assistance.
Causes of Shortage Caregiver
Low Pay– Caregivers starting pay is 7 to 8 dollars for an hour. If additional staff is needed at the moment, facilities will hire “temporary staff or agency” which they pay 25 dollars per hour for a caregiver. Agency will then give only 13 to 14 dollars for the temporary caregiver.
Physically Demanding– It is only reasonable that workers want to work in a place where pay is good and the working conditions are best. Nursing homes usually do not provide both. Normally, a caregiver of a day shift will have 10 residents to care. If some staff is absent, more residents will be given to care for. Afternoon shifts caregivers will assist 15 to 20 residents and the night shifts have 20-25. Some facilities can hire temporary staff but others cannot and so they spread an extra work to the staff. That even makes the work more exhausting.
Emotionally Demanding – Caregivers are expected to develop personal relationships with the residents. They need to know them and should meet their needs and preferences both physically and emotionally. Providing care to 10 or more residents can drain every caregiver emotionally.
Residents for long-term care facilities are dependent on the caregivers. Quality care can only be provided by a person who knows the residents personally. Hiring temporary staff every now and then can affect the elderly seriously but giving extra work to caregivers is also critical to the workers well-being and can risk their job. Special attention should be given to this issue because if neglected, the well-being of our seniors residing in these facilities is at stake.
It is important to inquire about the staff ratio of the nursing homes.