The BACNH Police

When you have to put your sister in a board and care home because she is weak and you can’t lift her by yourself anymore, and you are (she is) paying thousands of dollars a month for her care, you want the care home to follow the law. You want the home to have the required two caregivers for its five or six residents.
So when the husband and wife go on a trip and only one caregiver is brought in to replace them, it is a concern. And it is also illegal if you are a licensed board and care home.
I come over daily. The other four residents, as far as I know, do not have family members coming over daily. Today was the second time I found only one caregiver, Mary, with the five residents.
“How are you today, Mary?” I asked.
“Tired,” she said.
I spent two hours there, where I met with the social worker, the nurse, and also fed my sis her pureed lunch.
“Where is the other person?” I asked Mary.
“She went to the store,” Mary said.
No caregiver had returned when I left two hours later.
I feel like the nursing home police. These people have no one advocating for them, and they can’t advocate for themselves.
The home administrator had all her reasons why she couldn’t be there. She sent me a text about her job doing jury duty. She doesn’t need to be there, but someone does. Otherwise the home is breaking the rules of its license and thereby breaking the law.
“Don’t report them, Mom!” my daughter said. They’ll kick out Aunt Barb.”
“They can’t do that,” I said.
The nurse told me today that they definitely do get rid of those squeaky wheels.
“They find a reason,” the nurse said.
This is unacceptable on so many levels. The system is broken if anyone advocating for the invalids in these homes might cause them to be evicted. If I am afraid to stand up to these practices, then my sister and the other four residents are in danger.
I told Mary today that my sister had to use the bathroom. Mary came down to help her. I went to the kitchen to make my sis a thickened glass of water and found a frying pan full of food cooking on the stove. When I returned to the room, Mary left my sis on the toilet to run down to the kitchen to check on the food. The regular care givers never leave my sis alone in the bathroom.
It’s not Mary’s fault. She is trying to do the work of two people by herself.
It’s not a good situation. What if I hadn’t come over today to see all of this? Who checks up on these places?
I guess I needed to vent.
I will call the ombudsman and get him involved if I find Mary there alone again tomorrow. Even if it means my sis will get kicked out of her place.
What else can I do? What would you do?

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