Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Happy Hooray

My sweet son-in-law got my computer set up so I can actually use it. For awhile I would switch to Word and write while I was waiting for a website to come up, it was so slow. Now I can be on the internet and use the phone at the same time.

Pet therapy

Some nursing homes have pet therapists that bring animals to visit the residents.
Actually, some nursing homes will let you bring in a pet, but they prefer one that is well trained so that it doesn't jump up on people, etc. Some require specially trained dogs. I see more and more staff members bringing a dog with them, usually on a slow weekend day. That way is best, then the dog has an office of some place to get away from people, and some relief from having to please dozens of people. The constant feeding of snacks is a problem, too. It doesn't work very well for a dog to live in a nursing home. However, some homes will let a resident bring her cat. I brought probably the first facility cat in, at least in this county, years ago, probably in 1982 or so. The other activity person had left and one of the residents was so attached to her that we got her a kitten to distract her. The lady was developmentally mentally disabled (but smart as a whip). We used to call it retardation. The cat worked well because she skirted around the room if there were lots of people, not rubbing on legs or tripping people. She slept in Annie's room and Annie fed her. The cat lived for 19 years. I guess a person could take in a little gentle dog for a certain friend. Family sometimes bring in the animals the residents left behind, for a visit. Then others always want to see the animal. Just remember there is a liability consideration, too.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Visiting in a nursing home

Well, I'm using a library computer. It should be only a couple of days until I get my home computer set up and hopefully it will actually let me use it. Robin expressed interest in taking her children to visit in a nursing home. I told her to take the kids and walk around in a public area until a resident shows interest in the children. Then she can introduce herself and voila! she now has a friend to visit. If someone asks her if they can help her find someone in particular, just say, "I want my kids to know what a nursing home is." Likely you will be shown around and even introduced to a resident or two. The problem with becoming a documented volunteer of the facility has gotten pretty complicated since HIPAA regulations have been introduced. Some nursing homes require a background check, drug test, hepatitis series and TB test. I haven't been able to find the section in the regs that inspired these requirements. In fact, I haven't found much information at all about nursing homes. I think some of the admins have overreacted in some ways. I understand why they don't want people just coming in off the streets and wandering around in and out of rooms, etc., however, I think decent people will be offended and put off by those requirements. If interested in being a facility volunteer, check with the Activities Director first. If you're interested in volunteering as a member of your church, approach your pastor first. After all, you will be representing the church and he needs to know what you plan to do. A full-fledged ministry through your church needs to be the burden of the person who is willing to do it. It works better than when a pastor stands up and announces that "we're starting a nursing home ministry and we need people to do it." It should either be his burden to do it, or that of someone who can be faithful to it. Believe me, I know. This is just my opinion, of course.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Thank you all

I just finished reading my daughter's blog about me. Thank you all for praying for me. I tried to post on her blog but my computer wouldn't let me. I did have to cardiovert but they put me out first. It worked. I have had several episodes of atrial fib before but they've all been related to an electrolyte imbalance. Not this one, however. Now the big concern is blood clots, strokes, etc., nothing to worry about!! I feel okay, felt okay one minute before it started. I have to take anticoagulants for now, at least until I see the doctor again. When a guy came in to help with the shocky thing, I asked him if he was the shock doc, or was he Doctor Shocker. He actually was there to revive me if I died, the respiratory therapist.
You know, I had been thinking I needed to make some kind of lifestyle change (don't we all?) but this is not what I was talking about:) Thanks again.