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Being Mortal


An eye-opening and riveting look at how how medicine can not only improve life...
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What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

Created: 09/01/17

Replies: 14

Posted Sep. 01, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1584

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What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

Reading about Bill Thomas's Eden Alternative in chapter 5, what came to mind when he outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?


Posted Sep. 12, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
renem

Join Date: 12/01/16

Posts: 172

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RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

I thought he hit the nail on the head. That is exactly what my vision of a nursing home was. I think making a nursing home as close as possible to a real home is exactly what is needed.


Posted Sep. 12, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Marcia S

Join Date: 02/08/16

Posts: 169

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RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

You need to feel that you actually matter as a person and individual. My mother was in a nursing home and she was unhappy. We should have talked about other alternatives, but we all were in denial, and also unaware of what else existed.


Posted Sep. 12, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
mildas

Join Date: 05/11/16

Posts: 14

RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

In eldercare what matters most is knowing that someone cares about you and your needs. You need to be able
to communicate with friends and family. This can be done through emails and texting or even letter writing.
Eldercare should feel like home.


Posted Sep. 12, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
alycet

Join Date: 04/23/12

Posts: 101

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RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

Those 3 Plagues will weigh anyone down. Those in "homes" need the stimuli to overcome these. A more home like setting rather than an institutional setting helps.


Posted Sep. 13, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
josephinej

Join Date: 05/11/15

Posts: 31

RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

I was fortunate with my mother that her nursing home was very good. I could bring my dog in to see her. They fussed over her (my mother - but yes, the dog too!) and gave her treats. They advocated for her when her doctor just wanted to give her more meds. I chose to go there for my rehab after both knee replacements and am happy I did so. I know our experience, however, is not the norm - but it should be!


Posted Sep. 16, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
juliep

Join Date: 04/07/12

Posts: 93

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RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

It seems that whenever the person felt like they were part of the community (like the man with the parakeets in his room , who began to take an interest in them), knew people and made friends, felt useful (walking the dog, feeding the animals), that helped tremendously. I know as a retired person, I miss the feeling of being needed and having a job to do, so have tried to fill that with volunteering.


Posted Sep. 16, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
dorothyh

Join Date: 01/23/15

Posts: 107

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RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

Being able to choose what and when I want to do something. Its is unfortunate that there is so much regulation in Nursing Homes and now Assisted Living, not to mention the increased amount of litigation.


Posted Sep. 19, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
swchis39

Join Date: 09/26/12

Posts: 54

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RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

I think he hit the nail on the head. Most of it is about loss of control.


Posted Sep. 20, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
sonjaj

Join Date: 09/20/17

Posts: 1

RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

I work for an organization responsible for building the first "Greenhouses" in the United States. Our skilled nursing and assisted living greenhouses provide a home-like environment by limiting the number of residents in each house to ten and allowing the resident to exercise as much independence as possible such as when they want to wake up, when and what they want to eat, etc. Dr. Bill Thomas was instrumental in helping us create this groundbreaking way of providing care to elders. Combating the Three Plagues via the Eden Alternative is at the forefront of our Greenhouse philosophy and we work hard to make sure our elders are living their lives as richly and fully as possible. It really is about the quality not the quantity of our days on this earth that matter.


Posted Sep. 23, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
darylb

Join Date: 06/23/13

Posts: 104

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RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

It certainly rang true to me having had both my parents and currently my mother in law in long term nursing facilities. It just makes me sick to see all the patients lined up in their wheelchairs watching tv for hours or asleep. I think being engaged and having something to look forward to is very important. I am sure it's hard for the staff and they are probably underpaid. I really like the Greenhouse philosophy and would seek out somewhere that facilitates that if faced with a choice of care. My parents lived in a graduated care place where you moved from independent living, to assisted living, to long term care. They chose it as it was a Methodist church home and came recommended by their church members. For the amount of money they charged per month they should have provided a much better quality of life.


Posted Sep. 26, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
janp

Join Date: 05/11/15

Posts: 31

RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

I agree with renem: "I thought he hit the nail on the head. That is exactly what my vision of a nursing home was. I think making a nursing home as close as possible to a real home is exactly what is needed." I remember visiting one in the mid-60's and being terrified by the zombie-like people. Sadly, that is still the case more often than not.


Posted Oct. 09, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kbschaffer

Join Date: 03/20/17

Posts: 8

RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

When we were children we would often say, "Let me do it. I can do it" And if adults would support us our sense of self would grow. As teenagers we wanted the right to make our own decisions, to drive or take public transportation by ourselves, to even make our own mistakes. And when we did we learned to navigate a grownup world. So when we age we have those choices taken away and as result we lose parts of our whole. I would add a fourth to Thomas's plagues - the loss of self. All we did, all we were, all we accomplished is taken away. No one knows or cares if we were a master gardener, teacher of the year, a naval pilot, a football player, if we had climbed a mountain, helped birth goats, soared in a hot air balloon. We are simply an old lady or some geezer.

What is needed then is to recognize the self - the person inside who is still present. Don't celebrate National Hog day by dressing the people in pig masks. (Yes, that did happen at a nursing home in Minnesota. The residents were forced to have their pictures taken which was published in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. The disgust on the faces of the women broke my heart) Staff has to be trained not to be "do fors" but rather as "do withs".


Posted Oct. 10, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
N*Starr

Join Date: 03/13/14

Posts: 40

RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

I called my grandma and told her I wanted to teach a constitutional law class at her assisted living facility . She was only marginally interested.


Posted Nov. 07, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
scottishrose

Join Date: 07/24/11

Posts: 51

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RE: What came to your mind when Bill Thomas outlined the Three Plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness? What do you think matters most when you envision eldercare?

I think that depends on what you make of it. For my grandpa who wasn't able to drive the last few years before going into a nursing home, he found that there were people there to talk to and play cards with it. I think it made his last few months less lonely. For my dad, on the other hand, he only left his room for meals. He would enjoy visits from family and a few close friends, but mostly spent his time reading and watching TV rather than engaging the world. For him I think that was part of letting go as he came to realize he would never be healthy enough to return "home."


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