The Negative Effects of Ageism in Senior Care Communities
According to Galfandberger, ageism is “prejudice and discrimination against someone because of how old they are.” When doctors misguidedly profile patients who are 65 years or older, it puts them at a much greater risk for unsafe medication side effects, medical misdiagnoses, and unnecessary tests and treatments.
DID YOU KNOW?
Adults ages 65 and older see doctors on average twelve times per year, and nearly 80 percent see a primary clinician at least once per year (Davis et al., 2011).
A senior care provider’s knowledge and attitudes about aging can alter how accurately and sensitively they identify normal changes connected with aging from acute and chronic illnesses. According to Kane, Ouslander, and Abrass (2004) ageism can take the form of a provider dismissing treatable pathology as a feature of old age or treating expected changes of aging as though they were diseases.
This explains the growing need for more providers with geriatrics expertise. However, according to research, many physicians-in-training come to view the care of older adults as irritating, uninteresting, and overall, less rewarding. Most trainees’ attitudes are further forged by the continuous misconceptions that older patients are demented, frail, and somehow unsalvageable.
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Our caregivers ensure that the services and treatments that we provide for those under our care are appropriate and safe for their individual conditions. Do not settle for less than what your loved one deserves!