Nursing Homes: Do More Aides Mean More Hand-Washing?
Here’s another reason to look for a nursing home with a good staff-to-patient ratio: infections.
Nursing homes are being cited for hand-washing violations more now than in the past, reports The New Old Age. Part of the reason may be inspectors are just looking harder, the post says. But researchers led by University of Pittsburgh gerontologist Nicholas Castle did discover some trends:
Dr. Castle’s analysis of Medicare data points to staff members that are stretched thin: hand hygiene deficiencies show up significantly more often in nursing homes with proportionately fewer nurses, both R.N.s and L.P.N.’s, and aides. Facilities where many residents need a more hands-on help, or have dementia, have more hand-washing lapses, too.
In 2009, almost 12 percent of nursing homes were cited for inadequate hand hygiene, according to the post.
Leigh Ann Otte is a freelance writer who specializes in health and aging issues. She covers finding and paying for senior care for OurParents. If you have any questions about this post or need help finding senior-care options for a loved one, call 1-866-483-4896 to speak with a care advisor in your area.