“Let’s stop mistreating the old”: an association formulates 44 proposals to change nursing homes

Following the ORPEA scandal, the Association of Directors at the Service of the Elderly (AD-PA) is calling for immediate action to transform nursing homes in a plea published on Thursday, Feb. 10. A total of 44 welcome proposals were made to offer our seniors a peaceful end of life. Here are six shared by the regional daily press group EBRA

Ban on being tied up and locked up

This measure seems obvious and yet in France most residents of nursing homes are deprived of the full exercise of their freedom. In order to facilitate the work of carers (there are not enough of them and the attendance time is too short), seniors are sometimes tied up and locked in their rooms. Alarming and contradictory living conditions “respect for fundamental rights and the Constitution”as AD-PA explains.

“The state must invest in human resources to enable professionals to end any measure of incarceration or coercion of vulnerable older people in institutions, such as at home. The argument to protect people from themselves is not acceptable. †

Self-Guided Tours

According to a report by the National Solidarity Fund for Autonomy (CNSA), the price of permanent housing for a single room in a nursing home averages 2,004 euros per month. For this price, residents should be able to fully enjoy their freedom, in particular by receiving their loved ones whenever they want. But the reality is often very different. In its plea, the association states that ” visits must therefore be free at any time of the day or night if this is in line with the wishes of the resident. †

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Decorate your bedroom to your taste

An Ehpad is not a hospital, but a medical institution. Residents are at home there, and therefore have to furnish their rooms according to their own wishes and (without being rationed) be full of quality products. But it is not always the case. This is one of the proposals made by the AD-PA on Thursday, February 10: “Being at home means you can take or purchase the furniture of your choice and let the residents benefit from a balanced diet.

Right to own a pet

As we know, animals play a positive role in the health and morale of the elderly. However, if there is no absolute ban, more than half of nursing homes will refuse to allow residents to have a dog or cat. A measure that forces them to separate from their little companion before entering the establishment.

“In no country, not even in the countries that suffer from the most dictatorial regimes, can the inhabitants be banned from owning a pet.”† Maintaining obscure so-called health reasons without any basis means depriving French citizens of them, which is an unacceptable anomaly.† †

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Right to alcohol, tobacco and sexuality

In France, the decree of 15 November 2006 allows elderly people to smoke in their rooms. However, the director may decide to ban smoking for health or safety reasons. This is what the AD-PA is denouncing today, advocating for “refusing any ban on tobacco or alcohol and affirm a right to sexuality”.

On the sexuality of the elderly, we invite you to read our interview to discover how photographer Arianne Clément breaks through these many taboos.

Classify Nursing Homes

Hotels, campgrounds, and even restaurants get ratings, so why not nursing homes? Hereby the proposal formulated by the AD-PA in its plea. “It is now necessary to develop quality criteria that correspond to the expectations expressed, and to ensure a national publication of the results, mainly inspired by the star rating system for tourist hotels, the evaluation of the quality of life in the different municipalities and the classification of hospitals and clinics.”

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Proposals that are welcome and deserve to be heard.

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