Giving more attention to the psychological needs of residents,
A hot topic brought to you by SpecialtyRx, your partner in long-term care
staff and family members can be beneficial in numerous ways. When employees quit because they can’t manage the stress or a resident’s change in behavior goes unnoticed because it isn’t disruptive or a family member channels grief into a lawsuit, the results can be costly. The following suggestions can be of use.
People entering LTC facilities are evaluated by a number of departments but not psychology. When you take into ac- count everything a person goes through when entering a facility, the changes, the potential stressors, conducting a psychological evaluation seems logical.
According to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), “All Federal agencies provide Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs). An EAP is a voluntary, work-based program that offers free and confidential assessments, short-term counseling, referrals, and follow-up services to employees who have personal and/or work-related problems.” Providing your staff with access to EAP benefits can be advantageous to everyone.
Education & Training
Most nurses are trained to look for physical health concerns. Providing in-service training on mental health issues like anxiety, depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder can help them be more attuned to the residents in their care.
Environment is Important
A soothing environment is comforting. If a unit is chaotic it increases stress levels. Training your staff to understand the role environmental factors such as staff demeanor, room temperature and noise levels play in keeping residents comfortable, is essential to maintaining a tranquil environment.
Families dealing with a loved one who needs long term care is stressing on multiple levels. Paying attention to their needs, assisting with things like paperwork and guiding them through this transition can alleviate that stress and make the process easier on everyone.
Caring for the emotional and psychological needs of your residents, their families and your staff helps create an environment where everyone is happy.