Essay on As We Are Now

1976 Words Apr 25th, 2011 8 Pages
The book As We Are Now, written by May Sarton, targets those concerned with the care of elderly individuals in nursing homes. In the book, Sarton artistically highlights the plethora of ongoing issues social workers face in their work as they attempt to provide quality care to the elderly population. The book is written as the memoirs of a very thoughtful elderly woman, Caroline Spenser, as she spent part of her life in a nursing home; and brings to light the lack of quality of care that elderly individuals received when living in such a facility in the 1970’s.
The story is a work of fiction focusing on the life of Caroline Spenser, a 76 year old woman who, after suffering from a heart attack, is taken to Twin Elms Nursing Home to live
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The lack of attention to the aesthetics of the facility not only created a depressive feel, but also created sanitation issues. Caroline described the staff often placing soiled linens and used bed pans out in the hall for hours without being attended to. For Caroline, this exacerbated the painfulness of this already emotional transition for her when she first arrived. And even though Caroline’s room was cleaned by the staff prior to moving in, it still presented as dirty and with a foul order. The food at the nursing home was unappealing and often leads to the decrease in appetite of most of the residents. In addition, the fact that Caroline was the only female client posed a threat to her development of a support system and created an uncomfortable environment.
The workload was too much for the staff as they often were overloaded with responsibilities which took away the opportunity to be patient and create healthy relationships with the clients. The clients also felt denied autonomy and personal dignity in a cruel and inhuman manner. The mistreatments that the elderly clients were subjected to were numerous such as lack of respect, privacy and self-determination, physical abuse and neglect. But the most highlighted accounts involved Caroline and Standish Flint. As
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