Access to long-term nursing homes by French-speaking seniors in minority situations is a very real problem. However, few studies have been conducted on this subject. We wanted to better understand this issue in New Brunswick while taking into account the language aspect. In this article, we will present the problem based on different issues encountered by Francophones in minority situations and by giving an overview of the studies conducted on French-speaking seniors in minority situations. We will then address the issue related to the rights of French-speaking senior to receive services in French in nursing homes by analyzing briefly the province's legal requirements. Furthermore, we will present the regulatory framework of nursing homes in New Brunswick. Finally, we will provide a geographic analysis of existing New Brunswick nursing homes while taking into account the language aspect, the levels of service and the distribution of French-speaking seniors within the territory.
Accidental falls among residents of homes for the elderly have only received scanty notice in the literature. During a period of 15 months, 296 falls among 1,856 residents of homes for the elderly were analyzed prospectively. The age-specific incidences for falls and fractures of the neck of the femur which are treated in hospital were found to be higher for residents of homes for the elderly as compared with elderly persons living at home in the age group 65-85 years. Residents of homes for the elderly who constitute 7% of all ages over 65 years are responsible for 21% of all accidental falls and 32% of all the lower limb fractures treated in hospital.
Accidental falls in 54 nursing homes with 2228 elderly residents aged 65 years and over were registered during a period of seven months. During the seven months, 512 of the elderly residents fell on a total of 934 occasions. Forty-two fractures of the neck of the femur occurred. The risk of falls for elderly residents of nursing homes is very high, but the majority of falls do not result in permanent damage. In this investigation, no differences could be demonstrated between staff groups or circumstances concerning falls with and without resultant damage. All falls should be regarded as warnings and result in detailed investigation of the circumstances of the fall in view of prophylactic measures. Accidental falls are caused by a complex interaction between a series of health, therapy, furnishing and attitudes. Various circumstances are emphasized in this investigation which are connected with an increased risk of falling, e.g. vertigo, problems of balance, certain aids and activities in connection with toileting.
The drug consumptions of 2228 residents in nursing homes aged 65 years and over were investigated and related to accidental falls during a period of seven months. 95% of the residents received treatment with one or more drugs and 33% with six or more drugs. The risk of accidental falls was significantly increased in persons receiving hypnotics, psychomarmaca and anti-Parkinson medicine. Individuals receiving diuretics, particularly thiazides, were less at risk for accidental falls. This investigation revealed an increased risk of falls particularly when residents were receiving treatment with a short-term hypnotic (Triazolam). It is recommended that this finding should be investigated further.
Among a total of 4,862 admittances to a Swedish geriatric hospital and its associated nursing homes, 827 accidents occurred in 588 patients during one year. The purpose of the present study was to establish the direct causes of these accidents and to identify possible risk factors. Information was collected from medical records, interviews with patients and staff, examination of the mental and physical state of the patients, and through reconstruction of the accidents. The investigation embraced 270 patients with 308 major accidents (fractures, sprains, open wounds, concussions and injuries to ligaments), and 318 patients with 519 minor accidents (bruises, contusions, abrasions and minor burns). Injury-free patients with nearest lower bed number in relation to patients with major accidents formed a control group. Patients with previous injuries, balance disturbances, and polypharmacy were at high risk, and intrinsic factors such as dizziness and impaired balance proved to be more significant as direct causes for the occurrence of accidents than environmental factors. The estimated risk for a patient with all these risk factors to have an accident during one year was 94%.
The accuracy of patient records in Swedish nursing homes: congruence of record content and nurses' and patients' descriptions. Data from patient records will increasingly be used for care planning, quality assessment, research, health planning and allocation of resources. Knowledge about the accuracy of such secondary data, however, is limited and only a few studies have been conducted on the accuracy of nursing recording. The aim of this study was to analyse the concordance between the nursing documentation in nursing homes and descriptions of some specific problems of nurses and patients. Comparisons were made between wards where nurses had received training in structured recording based on the nursing process (study group) and wards where no intervention had taken place (reference group). Data were collected from the patient records of randomly selected nursing home residents (n=85). The methods used were audits of patient records and structured interviews with residents and nurses. The study revealed considerable deficiencies in the accuracy of the patient records when the records were compared with the reports from nurses and residents. The overall agreement between the interview data from nurses and from the patient records was low. Concordance was better in the study group as compared with the reference group in which the recorded data were structured only following chronological order. The study unequivocally demonstrates that there are major limitations in using records as a data source for the evaluation, planning and development of care.
Although most long-term care facilities cannot always evaluate and treat their residents during acute, intercurrent illnesses, it is possible to design systems that allow for effective care without transfer.