Invoking The Healthcare Proxy

Two questions I get asked regularly is, who can invoke the healthcare proxy and when should it occur?  I get these questions most frequently from adult children of elderly parents.  The question is asked because they have noticed a parent is having cognitive changes or increased confusion about medications or safety issues in the home.…

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One Nursing Home’s Alternative To Anti-Psychotic Medications.

The Boston Globe, part two in the series on the use of anti-psychotics in nursing homes, offers a look at  alternatives.  The article focuses on a nursing home, The Life Care Center of Nashoba Valley and how they do not have anyone on these medications for behavioral issues.  According to the data released by the…

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Nursing Home Use Of Antipsychotics: A Boston Globe Series

I want to thank the Boston Globe writers, Kay Lasar and Matt Carroll, for doing the series on the use of anti-psychotic medications to treat Alzheimer’s disease  and persons without a mental illness called “A Rampant Prescription, A Hidden Peril.”  I applaud them for their research and investigation into the over use of these drugs in…

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Is the Nursing Home Model The Best Option For The Future?

I often find myself wondering, while visiting a nursing home, how our healthcare system for the elderly ended up this way.  I have become very good at ignoring the smells, sounds, cries and staff’s freguent insensitivities and focusing on my client.  I also have to help  the family with the emotional, physical, psychological and financial…

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Elder Parent To Adult Child: I Am Not Ever Moving From My Home

I recently found myself in the middle of a what was supposed to be a discussion between parents and adult children about increasing services in the home or moving to an assisted living. Discussion is defined as, “ the action or process of talking about something typically in order to reach a decision or to…

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Pain Management: The Tyranny Of Standardized Care

Standards of care are based on analysis of a huge amount of data which means, it describes everyone but applies to no one individual specifically.   That is the problem when you try to convince a medical professional  the specifics of your situation and get them to actually listen. Pain management has become the elephant…

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Healthcare Proxy: Getting It Right

The healthcare proxy is the legal document authorized by the state allowing the patient to chose who will make medical decisions when incapacitated.  It is a powerful document.  Most people select a spouse or partner for this role with the understanding that your wishes have been discussed and understood. As an advocate, I have witnessed…

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