Community Nursing Homes: Veteran Care
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Community Nursing Homes: Veteran Care


  WOMAN: GOOD JOB!   MR. ALEXANDER…   WOMAN: COMMUNITY NURSING HOME
IS A 24-HOUR INPATIENT
PERIOD OF SERVICE,   WHERE YOU HAVE AN ENTIRE
TEAM THERE AROUND THE CLOCK   TO PROVIDE SERVICES
TO THE FRAIL, TO THE DISABLED,   TO THE ELDERLY,   TO THOSE WHOSE CARE NEEDS
HAVE EXCEEDED IN-HOME CARE.   WOMAN: THE FACILITY PROVIDES
CARE AS FAR AS THEIR SHOWERS,   HELPING THEM WITH THEIR
PERSONAL CARE,   HELPING THEM WITH THEIR REHAB,
SO YOU CAN HAVE THERAPY   AND ALSO LONG-TERM CARE
WHEN THEY’RE NOT ABLE TO
STAY AT HOME ANY LONGER.   WOMAN: MR. NICHOLS?
NICHOLS: COME IN.   WOMAN: THANK YOU. GOT YOUR
AFTERNOON PILLS FOR YOU.   MAN: OK.   ANTOINETTE: THEY HAVE ALL
LEVELS OF SERVICES THERE,   INCLUDING OCCUPATIONAL
THERAPY, SPEECH THERAPY,
PHYSICAL THERAPY,   DIETARY MANAGEMENT,
SOCIAL SERVICES,   AND SO, OFTEN TIMES, ONCE A
VETERAN GOES INTO A NURSING HOME
FOR A PERIOD OF TIME,   THEN THEIR NEEDS CHANGE,
THEIR HEALTHCARE STATUS
IMPROVES,   AND THEY CAN RETURN
TO THEIR HOME COMMUNITY.   BEVERLY: WE HAVE ALL
TYPES OF VETERANS.
WE HAVE VETERANS RANGING   FROM THE AGES OF 42 TO 95.   SOME, THEY JUST NEED THERAPY,
WHERE THEY’VE HAD AMPUTATIONS   OR THEY’VE HAD BROKEN HIPS.   THEN THERE’S VETERANS
WHO NEEDS TOTAL CARE,   WHERE THEY’RE NO LONGER
ABLE TO STAY IN THEIR HOME,   SO THEY NEEDED LONG-TERM CARE.   WE HAVE 2 DIFFERENT TYPES
OF CONTRACTS–   EITHER 45 DAYS AND THEN
WE HAVE INDEFINITE   FOR OUR VETERANS WHO ARE
60% UNEMPLOYABLE   OR 70% TO 100%
SERVICE CONNECTED.   THEY CAN COME INTO THE
NURSING HOMES AS MANY
TIMES AS THEY NEED TO   AND AS LONG AS THEY NEED TO.   ANTOINETTE: ONE OF THE
THINGS THAT THE DEPARTMENT
OF VETERANS AFFAIRS REQUIRES   IS THAT A VETERAN WHO IS
ADMITTED TO A NURSING HOME,   THEY ARE VISITED EVERY MONTH
BY A LICENSED PERSONNEL
FROM THE VA.   WE’RE THE ONLY SYSTEM
IN THE COUNTRY THAT
REQUIRES THAT.   WOMAN: SO, HOW HAVE
THINGS BEEN GOING?   MAN: PRETTY WELL.
WOMAN: WONDERFUL.   ANTOINETTE: WE HAVE A SOCIAL
WORKER AND A NURSE WHO
VISITS THAT VETERAN,   AND ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WE
LOOK AT WHEN WE MAKE A VISIT–   IS IT CLEAN?
IS IT NEAT?   WE ALSO TALK TO
THE ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF.   WE REVIEW THE CHARTS.
WE TALK TO THE CHARGE NURSES.   WE TALK TO THE AIDES.
WE TALK TO DIETARY STAFF,   BECAUSE WE’RE THERE
TO ASSESS THAT PATIENT’S CARE   TO ASSURE THAT THAT VETERAN
IS RECEIVING THE TYPE
AND QUALITY OF CARE   THAT WE ARE PAYING.   YOU GETTING YOUR SHOWERS
AS NEEDED?   MAN: YES.
WOMAN: WONDERFUL.   ANTOINETTE:
WE ALSO DO INSPECTIONS
OF THE NURSING HOMES.   THEY ARE COMPLETED ON
AN ANNUAL BASIS.   AND WE ALSO MAINTAIN CONTACT
WITH THE NEXT OF KIN   SO THAT THAT PERSON IS AWARE
OF THE CHANGING NEEDS
OF THAT VETERAN.   ONE OF THE BENEFITS
OF THE COMMUNITY
NURSING HOME PROGRAM,   IT ALLOWS THE PATIENT
TO BE NEAR THE FAMILY.   IT ALSO HELPS THE VETERAN
HAVE THE SUPPORT THAT HE NEEDS.   MAN: WELL, I GOT A SENSE OF
HAVING A ROOF OVER MY HEAD,
3 MEALS A DAY,   SNACKS ANY TIME I WANT,   SOMEONE TO BE ON CALL
IF I NEED IT.   IF I FALL HERE, I HAVE SOMEBODY
IMMEDIATELY AT MY SIDE.   IF I’M AT HOME, I HAVE
TO WAIT, NOT VERY LONG,
BUT I HAVE TO WAIT.   I JUST THINK
I’M BETTER OFF HERE   WHERE I CAN GET
IMMEDIATE ATTENTION.   I FEEL BETTER OFF THAT WAY
THAN I WILL BE AT HOME.   BEVERLY: I’VE BEEN
WORKING IN THIS PROGRAM
FOR OVER 12 YEARS.   AND JUST TO BE ABLE TO SEE
THE VETERANS GET BETTER
AND GO HOME,   THAT’S AN AWESOME FEELING
WHEN YOU SEE SOMEONE
WHO’S VERY SICK,   COMES TO A NURSING HOME,
AND IS ABLE TO GO HOME,   AND JUST THINK WHAT
WE CAN DO, THE MANY THINGS
THAT THE VA OFFER.   IT’S GREAT FOR THE VETERAN.    

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