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Safety in numbers.

We've all heard it before. There's safety in numbers. Never has that been more true than in the long term care facility.

No, it's not that the seniors are banding together in "wilding" sprees, or that teams of rogue CNAs are short-sheeting resident beds. It's that if the appropriate attention is not paid to a number of things like providing adequate skin care, defending against elopement, proper transferring, nutrition, clear communication, and even employee screening, accidents and injury can occur.

In her article, "Who's monitoring resident health?," which starts on page 7 in this special supplement to Contemporary Long Term Care, Janice Olson, RN, MS, MEd, writes about the valuable role CNAs play in maintaining a healthy watch over residents. Their most important tools in the arsenal designed to keep residents safe: their eyes and ears.

Contributing writer Rachel Long uses a four-letter word to get our attention: Risk. In her article, "Increasing safety, managing risk," she explains how a heightened awareness of where potential problems lie can be your strongest ally in ensuring your residents' well being. Her commentary on good planning is a great place to start; her reference to the importance of criminal background checks makes for a compelling read.

Since you can't be expected to do it alone, Long writes about the value of forming a safety committee in your facility and the six critical duties it should perform.

In "Safe passages," Robert Volzer tells how to lose the institutional look without sacrificing safety. He gives us a look at his architectural firm's award-winning Kirkhaven Nursing Home (see page 21), noted for its renovation of a nurse's station/support area with the intent of eliminating a linear, institutional feeling in favor of an open layout.

As seen by the diversity of avenues from which we have approached this topic, safety is everybody's business.

Mark Zacharia

Editor-in-Chief and Publisher
COPYRIGHT 2001 Non Profit Times Publishing Group
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2001, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Contemporary Long Term Care
Date:Jun 1, 2001
Previous Article:IN BOX.
Next Article:Who's monitoring resident health?

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