We know what safe, gentle, patient, compassionate care looks like and there are many organizations that promote a vision/mission that includes a description. When examples of abuse hit the mainstream, as with this news report video from Spring 2013 and Those Emergency Blues blogpost on 9/22/2013 we are shocked and outraged. Maybe, we should be outraged, but I wonder if the shock comes from burying our heads in the sand. Like the famous Stanford experiment with the prisoners and guards, we know that human beings can be cruel.
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When violent behavior manifests, of course it is imperative that we respond to stop it. BUT, if that is all we do, e.g. fire people and act outraged, are we being as responsible as we could be? Shouldn’t we combine reacting to violent behavior with preventing it.
These are the steps that make sense to me. What would you add or how would you elaborate on them?
1. Increase awareness about the emotional and physical demands of taking care of one or more elderly family member or patient.
2. Look for ways to support professional, family, and community caregivers.
3. Supervise with clear expectations, support, and ultimately, discipline.