Nursing Homes: What is the Assessment Process All About and Why do health authorities want to control it?
In recent weeks, much has been said in public discourse about acute care beds occupied by seniors who are awaiting “placement in a nursing home.” Horizon Health Authority says that 31% of their acute beds are occupied such patients. This, of course, renders these beds inaccessible for post operative care or medical emergency care.
In the long term care system, the nursing home is, by a factor of 40%, the most expensive option for accommodation and care. Many people could be managed at home if the system were organized with proper supports tailored to the individual needs for home care. Others, perhaps up to 40%, could be cared for in Special Care Home facilities. Many of the Special Care Homes in NB provide a superb level of accommodation and care for elders including those with physical and mental challenges. Read more here
The Case for Conditions on Binding Arbitration
Listening to union leaders, be they CUPE or others, one would get the impression that the employer, in the current case, the Nursing Home Association and Government, is being rather stingy in looking at salary rate increases. When numbers like 1% or 2% or 5% over 5 years are thrown around they mean little to the average voter or citizen of New Brunswick.
What goes into a collective agreement is complex and challenging for employers who have to administer it fairly. What often happens in negotiations is that there is a push in early bargaining sessions to get through the narrative of the contract then leave compensation rate increases as the flash-point for government to deal with. Then it gets into the public arena and the public might be tempted to join the chorus of “they are hard-working people, just give the small increase and get this over with.”
Read more here
Labor Legislation Needs a bit of Human Service Reality:
Being a union member and the right of unions to strike are both essential elements in our democracy. I have been a member of a union and was actually an entry-level worker in health care when CUPE was originally organizing in New Brunswick. Throughout my career of 5 decades I have seen and worked with the best and worst of what collective bargaining brings to the health care environment. Read more here
Listening to the People: the lost art in politics?
In 1970, early in my career of administering hospitals, George Labovitz, one of the premiere consultants and motivational speakers in health care, made a huge impression on me and colleagues. I recall to this day that he taught us young health executives: listen to the people! It sounds so simple and most in leadership would say they do that. The truth is learned when you listen to employees in the coffee room or the café or hear their response to these columns!
Labovitz told us how he often is called into large organizations to help them solve organizational and people problems. In one such instance, he got most of what he needed for his consulting report, for which he was paid a good fee, by sitting in the cafeteria talking with employees! With humor, he told about getting from one employee a pretty accurate diagnosis of the organization’s issues to which he responded: “have you told anyone about this? If not, don’t! I need it for my report!” Read more here
Tinkering Will not resolve health and long term care issues:
The health and long term care system in NB has been so lacking in provincial focus and direction for so long that no amount of tinkering will fix it! The system, in economic terms, represents 50% of provincial spending and employs or is the main source of income for tens of thousands of New Brunswickers. That the system is at a “choke point” should come as no surprise to any who seriously understand the system for this has been predicted for decades. The problem has been, over many years, that the decisions to shift and reorganize the system, in the last 25 years, have been made largely at political level where decision-makers cannot possibly have sufficient understanding to understand the long term impact of short term decisions. Read more here.
Ken McGeorge, BS,DHA,CHE is a career health care executive based in Fredericton, NB, Canada.