After Ms. Ryan's psychotherapy session, I stopped at the nursing station and asked the nurse for the name of her aide. The nurse pointed to a uniformed woman right next to me, who turned and asked me with hostility, "How do you know it was me?" Surprised, I responded, "I just wanted to tell you Ms. Ryan was really happy with how you did her hair today. She wanted me to thank you for her." The aide appeared stunned. The nurse commented, "We usually expect complaints, not compliments."
Quality levels and customer satisfaction levels continue to improve in skilled nursing facilities, although increasing retention levels in certain positions remains a challenge, according to a new quality report from the American Health Care Association.
Compassion fatigue and grief are the unrecognized downside to working in the nursing home industry. When sufferers are overburdened by emotions, they want to escape from work, end up feeling isolated from coworkers and unable to participate in the daily give-and-take of the job.