It is no secret that many nursing home residents suffer from neglect and abuse. The situation has become even more dire in recent years, with nursing homes featuring frequently in the news due to poor conditions and substandard care for residents.
All of this attention on nursing homes, however, has shed light on the characteristics of the best and worst nursing homes around. According to NPR, small nursing homes that put the well-being of their residents above profit are the best for residents.
Why size matters
The average nursing home looks more like a hospital than a home. Smaller nursing homes that look more like houses with between 8 and 12 residents living there mean more individual value on the residents themselves. It is dehumanizing for the system to treat you like a number, and that is exactly what many larger nursing homes do.
In addition, larger nursing homes facilitate a wider spread of infection. Particularly since many nursing homes have more than one resident to a room sharing a bathroom (sometimes up to four), the spread of disease is common.
Most nursing homes are for-profit entities that benefit financially from cutting corners. This is part of the reason why disease is rampant in nursing homes: there is a financial incentive to have as many residents as possible in a small space.
Nursing home advocates say that nursing homes should be public utilities rather than profit machines. Most people do not think of themselves ending up in a nursing home, but the overall situation would be better if more did.