ERIC Number: ED282162
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987-Mar
Reference Count: 0
"If You Don't Like the Care, Why Don't You Take Your Mother Home?": Obstacles to Family/Staff Partnerships in the Institutional Care of the Aged.
The myth persists that the elderly are institutionalized because their relatives do not care enough about them. Nursing home staff may not respond to family members' concerns about their relatives with any better solutions than to take their relatives home. Family response to this lack of solution may be retreat or retaliation. Thus the institution and family are placed in an adversarial, rather than partnership, relationship. The family/institution relationship may be improved by: (1) exposing negative stereotypical attitudes held by staff about families; (2) sensitizing staff to the anxiety caused by the financial strain of long-term care; (3) training family, staff, and residents to understand the demands of the system and the roles and behavior required to ensure effective service; and (4) helping staff to recognize their unconscious guilt for being associated with a nursing home, a stigmatized social utility. Some excellent models of family programs and services are now available as guides. Following the principles suggested, and developing programs tailored to the individualized and cultural needs of the families, long-term care institutions can overcome the obstacles to family/staff partnerships by coordinating and linking their shared functions. (ABL)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Society on Aging (33rd, Salt Lake City, UT, March 14-17, 1987).