When I had just gotten married my wife still worked for an elder care assisted living facility. It was a type A facility in Texas and so the residents were expected to be able to get out of their bed unassisted during emergencies. My wife really liked her job and the rewarding nature that comes with taking care of the elderly. She understood that many of the elderly at these facilities had no visitors and had lost the ability to think clearly. When an elderly person became verbally abusive my wife understood to not take these things personally and realize that their mental state had been diminished with age.

Unfortunately many care workers at these types of elder care facilities do not understand the complexities of taking care of the elderly. Any verbal abuse by a resident is taken personally and it is not uncommon for the care worker to enact some type of revenge however minor it may be. Often the people hired to take care of seniors in an assisted living have violent histories and very few people skills. What the assisted living facilities often look for are people that will be content to work for minimum wage and are not likely to leave to find another job. These criteria often result in the hiring of people straight out of the juvenile detention center.

Not all assisted living facilities are like this but a notable amount is and it can be traced back to some fundamental flaws in how management is compensated. Bonuses get paid out to managers that can be $10,000 and up for keeping the facility under budget. Maintaining a facility under budget requires a lot of hard work and so the easy way to do this without spending a lot of time and hard work is by firing some of the care workers so that the facility is consistently run under staffed. My wife worked at a Texas assisted living facility that had 1 care worker for every 30 residents. She found it impossible to get to everyone that needed care in time. Even though she worked at a Type A facility many of the residents could not get in and out of bed unassisted and really should have been moved to a Type B assisted living.

An assisted living facility would rather keep their residents than have to move them out and lose the monthly revenue and so many Texas assisted living facilities will keep residents longer than what is safe. A resident may have a severe case of dementia or Alzheimer’s and even though management knows this they will keep them at the facility and will not notify their family. The risk in this situation is that the elderly person with the memory disease could become confused and leave the facility wondering out onto a street or into the hot sun to possibly die. This is a risk many Type A assisted living facilities allow to happen and it all boils down to keeping a steady stream of revenue coming in at whatever the cost.

In summary we would like to say that not all assisted living facilities in Texas operate in such a deplorable manner but my wife has personal experience with this. We have seen examples of these negatives at assisted livings happening in several cities in the state of Texas. The only way to avoid these bad business practices and abuse to elderly residents is by creating harsher penalties to the facilities that break these laws. The loved ones of the elderly must also pay much more attention to the care their parents are receiving as they are just as responsible for their safety as the facility.

Author's Bio: 

Donny writes about elder care in the US and focuses on safety standards at elder care facilities. When Donny is not writing about elder care he attends conferences on website marketing, takes family vacations, and enjoys softball and fishing in his free time.