Nursing Homes: The Family's Journey

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Being the family member of someone in a nursing home is part of a difficult and painful process that begins long before a loved one enters the home. Focusing on the psychological, emotional, and social aspects of that process, Nursing Homes: The Family's Journey gives family members important practical advice and emotional support, and it explains the intricacies of care and nursing homes.

Peter S. Silin approaches his subject with compassion and sensitivity, guiding readers ...

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Overview

Being the family member of someone in a nursing home is part of a difficult and painful process that begins long before a loved one enters the home. Focusing on the psychological, emotional, and social aspects of that process, Nursing Homes: The Family's Journey gives family members important practical advice and emotional support, and it explains the intricacies of care and nursing homes.

Peter S. Silin approaches his subject with compassion and sensitivity, guiding readers through the entire process. Section one helps caregivers cope with difficult decisions and deal with the emotional issues that arise. Section two describes nursing homes and how they work, and it outlines how to choose a home. Section three explains how to prepare for the day a relative moves into a nursing home and suggests ways to help the resident settle in. The fourth section focuses on the family member's role in solving problems, obtaining quality care, and visiting, and it offers advice about how to deal with death and dying. After each chapter are real-life vignettes written by caregivers which help validate and support the reader.

In assisting their loved ones through the transition to life in a nursing home, one of the greatest obstacles families face is a dearth of practical information and sympathetic experience. This book will help fill the gap for family members and their infirm relatives, as well as for social workers and family therapists. It will also be a valuable tool for nursing home administrators and care staff.

The Johns Hopkins University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Inside GCM
An important book about the often difficult and painful process that begins long before a loved family member enters a nursing home... A thorough, excellent and humane book that helps families navigate a difficult, traumatic life change in the most successful way possible.

— Marcie Paker, Ph.D.CFLE

Los Angeles Times

Among the most valuable chapters in this book is one titled Making a Home Better, which includes wonderful advice on how a loved one can influence what goes on inside a nursing home. His inclusion of real-life stories from the families he's encountered over 20 years anchors the book compassionately.

Vancouver Sun

Silin has worked in elder care for 20 years and has his own geriatric care management company, Diamond Geriatrics. Reading his book, you're hearing the voice of experience.Although there is a vast literature on choosing a nursing home, this book seems to do more.

Marietta (Ohio) Times
With a clear and intelligent writing style, Silin has performed a vital service that will make nursing home decisions easier.

— Bob Powers

Booklist

[Silin] counsels realistically on what to look for in choosing a home, how to deal with the family member who will become a resident, and how to handle the various relationships that will be involved. He doesn't just discuss those matters; he also suggests what to say in various situations and how to say it. Moreover, he considers feelings of guilt and shame as well as such things as selection, costs, and handling complaints.

ElderCare Online

This is both a very humanistic book and a very practical one... written with the insight of a sociologist and geriatric care manager, someone who sees the human side of the equation first.

Arizona Daily Star
Practical and valuable information at a difficult time.

— Annette Meyer

Journal of Gerontological Nursing

This book is a complete guide to the family's complex journey of placing someone in a nursing home.

Inside GCM - Marcie Paker

An important book about the often difficult and painful process that begins long before a loved family member enters a nursing home... A thorough, excellent and humane book that helps families navigate a difficult, traumatic life change in the most successful way possible.

Marietta (Ohio) Times - Bob Powers

With a clear and intelligent writing style, Silin has performed a vital service that will make nursing home decisions easier.

Arizona Daily Star - Annette Meyer

Practical and valuable information at a difficult time.

From The Critics
Reviewer: Myra A Aud, PhD, RN (University of Missouri-Columbia)
Description: This book speaks directly to families who are faced with decisions about nursing home placement. It discusses a variety of issues related to nursing home placement decisions and supplements that discussion with narratives from family caregivers of their experiences.
Purpose: The purpose is to assist family caregivers who are faced with the prospect of nursing home placement for an elderly relative. The book includes information about choosing a nursing home, making the transition into the nursing home, and assuring quality care after admission. This information is needed by family caregivers who are often simply told by healthcare providers to "go and find a nursing home." The author has provided important information to help them in that search and also to cope with the feelings surrounding the placement of a relative in a nursing home.
Audience: Throughout the book, the author is speaking directly to family members: spouses, sons, daughters. Although this book is written especially for families, it would be valuable reading for geriatric social workers, clergy, nurses, and long-term care administrators. The author's experience as a geriatric social worker establishes his credibility. In the preface he describes listening to family members in a support group setting and at other times as they described their experiences placing relatives in nursing homes.
Features: The book includes topics related to making decisions about care for an elderly relative, choosing a nursing home, making the actual transition into the nursing home, and assuring quality care after admission. In addition to providing factual information about long-term care and the process of decision making, the author addresses the feelings that family members experience and how to cope with those feelings. The attention to the feelings of the family members, and the author's concern for the family members, are especially valuable features of this book. The size of the potential audience is increased by the author's inclusion of information about both the Canadian and U.S. long-term care systems. The appendixes include questionnaires to assist families in evaluating different nursing homes.
Assessment: I was very impressed with the insertion of narratives from family members between the chapters. Hearing directly of the experiences of family caregivers reinforces the material and makes the chapter's information more immediate and less didactic. The content of the chapters is excellent and should be useful for families. Reading it I could identify advice that I have shared with families struggling with decisions about nursing home placement. Although I have read other books about nursing home placement and nursing home quality, this book stands out for its focus on the feelings of the families at this stressful time.
Los Angeles Times
Among the most valuable chapters in this book is one titled "Making a Home Better", which includes wonderful advice on how a loved one can influence what goes on inside a nursing home...His inclusion of real-life stories from the families he's encountered over 20 years anchors the book compassionately.
Booknews
...Gives family members practical advice and emotional support when facing the decision to place a relative in a nursing home and presents voices and stories of family caregivers struggling with the nursing home decision. There is material on talking about care with the relative needing care, caring at home versus finding a nursing home, and a detailed overview of a typical day in a nursing home. There is also discussion of guilt, loss, and grief, visiting, and working with other families to improve a nursing home. Includes a list of US state ombudsperson offices, and a questionnaire for assessing a nursing home. Silin is a geriatric social worker and principal of a geriatric care management company in Canada.
Peter S. Belson
This is a terrific book that will be of immense comfort and benefit to those who read it. Families dealing with aging and chronic illness need concrete information, decision support and clear, empathic guidance to face and accept the storm of emotions that accompany these issues. Peter Silin's book does all of that, in a calm, forthright and sometimes humorous manner that goes directly to the often unspoken pain that complicates the process of choice. The inclusion of the stories from support group members is invaluable. I enthusiastically recommend this work to clients and fellow care management professionals.
William H. Thomas
These true stories speak with power and passion.
Lilian Wells
The information in Nursing Homes is of excellent quality. The vignettes are a powerful supplement to each section. Silin's style is informal and easy to read but based on sound theoretical principles, research, and 'best practices' in gerontology.
Booknews
Gives family members practical advice and emotional support when facing the decision to place a relative in a nursing home and presents voices and stories of family caregivers struggling with the nursing home decision. There is material on talking about care with the relative needing care, caring at home versus finding a nursing home, and a detailed overview of a typical day in a nursing home. There is also discussion of guilt, loss, and grief, visiting, and working with other families to improve a nursing home. Includes a list of US state ombudsperson offices, and a questionnaire for assessing a nursing home. Silin is a geriatric social worker and principal of a geriatric care management company in Canada. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

5 Stars! from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780801866258
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 5/28/2001
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.68 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter S. Silin is a geriatric social worker and principal of Diamond Geriatrics, Inc., a geriatric care management company in Vancouver, British Columbia. He has worked in all areas of senior care.

The Johns Hopkins University Press

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Table of Contents

Contents:



Chapter I Caring Decisions

When Someone You Love Goes into Care

Deciding about Care

Family Decision Making

Guilt, Loss, and Grief



Chapter II The Nursing Home or Other Facility

About Nursing Homes

Viewing the Home

Staff Roles: Who Does What

The Nursing Home System



Chapter III Moving In and Settling In

Preparations for Moving Day

Moving Day

Settling In



Chapter IV Being the Family Member of Someone in Care

Care, Care Plans, and Care Planning

Communication and Problem Solving

Visiting

Out-of-Town Caregivers

Making a Home Better

Difficult Decisions and the End of Life

The Johns Hopkins University Press

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 3, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Understanding How Nursing Homes Function

    The author is a geriatric care manager. His years of experience provides a road mad for the first time care provider. He provides information on everything; how to select a nursing home, the role of the staff, how the system functions, legal obligations, insurance, emotional support--all in an effort to aid the end of life decisions. Web sites are provided for further research.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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