AustinPUG Health

AustinPUG Health

Caring For The Elderly. Why Is Training Important?

Whenever we think of elderly and care houses the same clich?d image of a frail old lady in a wheelchair comes to our mind. She wears thick glasses and has an awkward smile, probably an indication of her severe cognitive decline caused by dementia. You can’t help but feel rather depressed after all she could have been your mother. And then you think of the carer. Newspapers describe horrific stories of negligence -not particularly flattering for the care homes staff- which put you in the dilemma of assigning the care of your beloved to someone you don’t know or keeping them in the house close to you. Deciding to cater for your beloved elders all by yourself comes with a caveat though: lack of time and expertise. If you have plenty of time you have solved the first problem but it is unlikely you can solve the second one. Your best bet is to choose carers who can instil both you and the patient trust.

In a paradoxical way, gaining someone’s trust takes time while at the same time first impressions largely determine the way we ‘choose’ people. When it comes to choosing carers it all boils down to two factors;compassion and expertise.

compassion Caring For The Elderly. Why Is Training Important?It is clearly important that health professionals should display empathy and behave compassionately. Scandals of vulnerable people being mocked and even tortured by the staff that should be supporting them show the impact on patients when carers lack sensitivity. However, medical educators warn that the health professional who feels our pain most is likely to be the one who burns out first. Perhaps being professionalis more important than anything else when you look after someone. A classic example is a heart surgery; most of us are less concerned about whether a doctor is kind and more worried about whether they know what they are doing.

The importance of expertise in health and social care has been recently emphasized by the British government. The Code of Conduct and National Minimum Training Standards for healthcare support workers has been reviewed and now focuses on areas that are designed to cover the key knowledge for health and care workers.

The updated National Minimum Training Standards set out what should be covered during a period of induction in the first weeks of employment such as courses of safeguarding and infection control. What goes wrong, in some care homes, is the difficulty of maintaining professional standards because the staff are under-resourced and poorly led. On the one hand we have legislation which is increasing and on the other hand we have budgets which are tight and decreasing.

For this reason, the care homes to address are those which find a way to make the best out of their resources. They are highly organised and structured, their courses are accredited and their staff progress is tracked regularly. Ideally they combine in-house with online learning and offer tailored packages of training which fit the carer’s time and budget. Hence, if you take caring for the elderly seriously, make sure you do your research before rushing into any decision.

About Author: Katerina Kardamaki is an avid blogger who writes about a wide range of topics. She is currently writing on behalf of
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