Sunday, March 22, 2009

Mentally Ill A Threat In Nursing Homes?

“Over the past several years, nursing homes have become dumping grounds for young and middle-age people with mental illness …”


Now that was a helluva head line to read especially if you have a family member or friend living in a 24/7 care facility.

Reading on and learning that a woman with Multiple Sclerosis and dementia started a fire at a Connecticut nursing home killing 16 other residents was a vivid reminder of the day Patti while still at home with Multiple Sclerosis and the onset of her dementia like symptoms accidentally set our stove on fire.

A litany of tragic incidents in the AP story leaves you wondering about the Saturday morning fire that killed 4 developmentally disabled people at the New York State Office of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities group home in Wells, NY.

The AP story offers several reasons from closing of mental institutions to the business of filling rooms at nursing homes.

I would propose two others. First aging home caregivers, a mentally disabled adult may have been a mentally disabled child. Parent caregivers may have died or can no longer care for them physically and/or economically. Second a failing health care system with far more have nots than haves.

Caring about people can never be about warehousing people whether they are frail and elderly or disabled and young.

Caregivingly Yours, Patrick Leer
web site:
musings: Patrick Ponders ...


  1. Unfortunately these days it seems to be only about the money. I hope it changes.

  2. amen to you last sentence, Patrick, but I totally agree with what Julie said. such a dilemma how to provide services for all that are of need for them, unfortunately no answers here; can only hope perhaps our new president and all the "hope" in him might have some solutions down the line

    hope you all are enjoying spring Patrick :)



Blog Archive