BC Seniors advocate has released a study on resident on resident violence in assisted living care homes.
Isobel Mackenzie looked into 422 reported serious incidents of violence.
She says this a complex issue, stating that there are actually two victims when violence occurs in a care home. Obviously the person being abused, but the aggressors who “often times got moderate to severe dementia, this is not behaviours that can be corrected punitively. These are behaviours that we need to learn to manage.”
Her report found that violent incidents were most likely to occur between 4 – 8pm. She says there was also a connection between care hours and violent incidents.
“Facilities where incidents occurred has slightly lower average hours of care per resident than facilities that had no incident.” Mackenzie said noting that many of these homes with lower hours of care actually had residents with more complex conditions.
Her recommendations call for a tighter link between hours of care in a home and the complexity of its residents. Reporting of violent incidents could also be improved, because private and public facilities follow different protocol.
With 27,000 people in care homes across BC, Mackenzie says 422 incidents don’t indicate an epidemic of any sorts, but says there is still work to be done.
Tweaks can be made to the facilities themselves, pointing out that many people with dementia can get overwhelmed by noise.
“So having spaces that have decreased noise, low stimulants without a lot of things, about half of our facilities have these, but half don’t.
She says more secured outdoor spaces and walking circuits seem to make a positive difference as well.