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Home is Where you Grow up Wanting to Leave…..

Home is where you grow up wanting to leave and grow old wanting to get back.

Excerpts of the article ‘Where to live is not always an easy decision’ by Dr. Michael Gordon-Medical Program Director of Palliative Care at Baycrest Geriatric Health Care System.

Home is where you grow up wanting to leave and grow old wanting to get back. John Ed Pearce


 
Caring families want the best for their loved ones. Sometimes, however, in the quest to provide what is thought to be the most suitable and safest care, they can forget that the person they care about has to be part of the decision-making process.
Family members often assume that if there is any degree of cognitive impairment or if there has been a serious fall, the best solution is a “protective environment”. This usually gets translated into a retirement or nursing home solution, depending on the loved one’s level of function. It is easy to forget that decisions related to where one should live cannot be based solely on issues of safety.
Sadly, there are often conflicts between children, siblings or parents as to what is “best”.

It is important to consider that sometimes, the mild cognitive impairment and repeated falls can also be caused by adverse reaction to new medication, or a wrong combination of medication for different ailments. Some may cause an excessive fall in blood pressure on standing, combined with excessive slowness of the heart. If this issue can be addressed, the mild cognitive impairment would not necessarily be considered unsafe, and the falls would be significantly reduced or avoided completely. In this case, the loved one’s decision to continue to live at home, or with one of the children or family member, is a very appropriate one. It would help tremendously if the living quarters are on the main floor, and a Personal Emergency Response System-PERS device is worn at all times.

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