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Using Your Personal Support Worker Training to Keep Seniors Safe During Flu Season

2018-03-21 by NAHB

No one wants to get the flu. This unpleasant illness comes once a year around mid-fall and hangs in the air until about mid-spring. The current flu season is not quite done yet, which means the nasty bug can still be caught. As such, various precautions should still be followed in order to avoid getting the flu. This is especially important for seniors.

Human defenses weaken with age, so seniors are an at-risk group for getting the flu. If infected, they produce less antibodies or fighting agents. Because of this, seniors can have a harder time fighting off the virus, and are more likely to develop serious health complications like pneumonia. That’s why it’s paramount to do your best as a personal support worker to keep your clients safe during flu season. To find out how to do it, keep reading.

Get Your Flu Shot to Protect Your Clients From Harm

One of the best ways that seniors can prepare for flu season is to get their flu shot. However, it’s also important for professionals who work closely with seniors to get their flu shot as well. That includes PSWs, who can help to protect their clients by ensuring that they don’t become sick and spread the virus.

Since the flu virus changes a bit each year, so does the flu shot, which is why it should be taken annually. Optimally, everyone should get their flu shot by the end of October, but it’s possible to get it anytime before the flu season ends, even in spring. Remember, though, that it takes about two weeks for the immunity created by the flu shot to set in, so the sooner the better.

Use Your Personal Support Worker Training to Help Your Clients Maintain Good Hygiene

Maintaining proper hygiene and good health habits are important to preventing the spread of the flu virus. For professionals with personal support worker training this includes washing hands regularly with antibacterial soap and warm water. Just a little rinse isn’t enough, though. Hands should always be scrubbed for at least 15-20 seconds to ensure all germs are eliminated.

Germs can collect on the hands from surfaces like doorknobs, handrails, and countertops, so it’s also important to ensure all these are frequently cleaned as well. This will minimize the chances of germs surviving on these surfaces and spreading to others.

You can also instruct your clients to avoid touching their mouth, nose, and eyes. Touching any of these areas can spread germs to the respiratory system, where they can more easily attack the body.

Hydration, Nutrition, and Rest All Help Maintain a Healthy Immune System

Making sure your clients are properly looking after their immune systems by staying well hydrated, rested, and more is essential for protecting them from the flu.

Staying on top of hydration is especially important. Seniors can have a reduced sensation of thirst, which may lead to them forgetting to consume their recommended daily fluid intake. When working with clients after your PSW course, be sure to check that they are drinking enough water or other decaffeinated fluids. They can also get fluids from foods that have a high water content, such as fresh fruit. These are also a great source of nutrients as well!

In addition to staying hydrated, a proper diet rich in vitamins and minerals can help clients stay healthy and better able to ward off the flu. Vitamin C and other antioxidants can be especially beneficial. These can be found in many different foods, including leafy greens and several different types of fruit. Blueberries and raspberries, for example, are excellent sources of both. Of course, getting quality sleep, avoiding overexertion, and resting when tired will also help you clients stay protected against the flu.

Make sure your clients get plenty of fluids and nutrients

Are you looking to enroll in a personal support worker course?

Contact the National Academy of Health and Business to learn about our PSW program!

Essential Qualities Students Need to Succeed in Personal Support Worker Courses

2017-12-20 by Isabelle Schumacher

A Key Part of All Personal Support Worker Courses

Going back to school can be an intimidating experience, especially after years in the real world. Many students worry that their study skills might be a little rusty, or that balancing a busy schedule with school work will be too difficult to do. Fortunately, top personal support worker (PSW) programs are there to help students every step of the way. Whether by providing students with helpful support in finding financing options, or even assisting them in landing their dream job after graduation, our dedicated staff are there to help students launch their PSW careers. The expert instructors at National Academy of Health and Business (NAHB) also care deeply about the success of their students, and will happily answer any questions you might have throughout your studies.

In addition, there are also plenty of qualities that you might already possess which can be a true asset, both in the classroom and during your career. What are they? Read on to find out!

Compassion: A Key Part of All Personal Support Worker Courses

If you’re considering a career as a personal support worker, there’s a good chance that you care deeply about the wellbeing of others. Maybe you love to help others, or want to make a positive difference in your community. Perhaps you’ve been a caregiver for a loved one, and want to make sure that others get much-deserved attention as well.

Whatever reason you have for becoming interested in personal support worker training, your compassion will be an important key to your success both during your training and in your career. Whether helping a senior enjoy a tasty meal, or making sure a client with a disability is assisted with activities like personal hygiene, your compassion will shine through to all around you.

Attention to Detail: An Important Component to Any PSW Career

As you begin your different personal support worker courses, you’ll soon learn that attention to detail is an important part of this career path. That’s because each client under your care will be a unique individual with their own personality and medical history. Top personal support workers know to pay attention to key details and personalize the care each client receives. In fact, PSW programs like the one offered at NAHB even include an entire module on the individuality of the patient, so that students graduate ready to provide top-quality care. Your ability to notice details about clients will help you stand out during your classes, as well as in your long-term care and community placements.

PSWs work hard to personalize care for each client

PSWs work hard to personalize care for each client

Strength: An Essential Quality Found in All Personal Support Workers

Strength can come in many different shapes and sizes. It could be the physical strength to assist a client get in and out of bed safely. It can also be the strength to help clients and their families as they go through a very difficult time.

Many clients in long term care might be living with health problems, dementia, or other illnesses. For both the client and their family, this can be a difficult time. Palliative care, as well as coping mechanisms and tools for helping families, are included in PSW programs for this very reason. For many students returning to their studies, the life experience and personal strength they have developed are true assets. As you begin your studies, you’ll soon discover that your strength, combined with your compassion and attention to detail, will help you excel in your courses and truly make a difference in the lives of others.

The strength and compassion of PSWs makes a world of difference for their clients

The strength and compassion of PSWs makes a world of difference for their clients

Are you ready to earn your personal support worker certificate?

Contact National Academy of Health and Business to get started!

Why Ontario Needs More Personal Support Workers than Ever Before

2017-08-13 by NAHB

PSW PROGRAMS ONTARIO

PSW PROGRAMS ONTARIO – STARTS IN SEPTEMBER AND NOW COULDN’T BE A BETTER TIME TO ENROLL



PSW Programs Ontario

Personal Support Workers play a crucial role in providing care for the aging, injured and ill population. The main goal of a PSW is to create an environment of physical, emotional and social wellbeing where patients have the assistance they need to uphold good health, but also maintain their independence.  As the average age of the population continues to rise, Ontario needs more PSWs than ever before.

If you’re interested in the Personal Support Worker certificate, there are several rewarding career options that open up to you after earning a diploma. Currently, PSWs are some of the most in-demand healthcare workers in Ontario, especially in places like:

  • Hospitals
  • Nursing homes
  • Agencies
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Private homes

Experts suggest that the demand will continue to increase over the next several years.  Read on to find out why, and how this demand could be a great opportunity for you to make a difference in the lives of those in need in your community.

More PSWs Needed to Maintain High Quality Care

In the role of a personal support worker, providing quality care means being able to meet all the needs of your patients, whether that means preparing meals, helping them get ready for their day with tasks like bathing and grooming, or sometimes simply spending time with them for social support.

In many areas throughout Ontario, the demand for support care workers is so great that a single PSW is working with multiple clients per day. This means that professionals who currently have a PSW certificate are constantly on the go, inevitably limiting the personal quality of care that is required, and preventing PSWs from building that important and beneficial caregiver relationship with clients and their families.

As the Baby Boomers Age, Canada Will Need More Personal Support Workers

The aging baby boomer population will inevitably have a major impact on Canada’s healthcare system, and is yet another reason why it will be increasingly important to have more personal support workers in the upcoming years.

The baby boomer generation began to move into retirement in 2012. Due to Canada’s low birth rate, approximately one in four Canadians will be senior citizens by 2036. In this year, Canada’s 8.2 million boomers will require a large amount of the country’s healthcare services, including ongoing support from professionals with a PSW certificate.

PSW Programs Ontario: Why Ontario Needs More Personal Support Workers Than Ever Before

In an effort to standardize quality of care and meet the growing demand for PSWs in hospitals, long-term care facilities and private homes, the Ontario provincial government has taken several measures in recent years.

The Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care recently developed a PSW Registry to collect information about the training and employment status of the nearly 100,000 PSWs working in Ontario, in an effort to better understand PSWs and to help make sure they had all they needed to provide proper care.

Ontario’s government also took a major role in developing personal support worker programs for career colleges which improves and standardizes the level of personal care given to clients. The programs are a balance between practical theory and hands-on training, so if training to become a PSW is something that interests you, you’ll graduate with all the knowledge you need to step right into the workplace!

What aspects of a personal support worker career most interests you?

FINDING WORK AS A PERSONAL SUPPORT WORKER

2017-07-12 by NAHB

Best Colleges in Ontario

Once you have completed your personal support worker training and find it’s time to go out and get a job that can put what you learned in psw courses to good use, you’ll need a solid game plan. Here are some suggestions to get you started on this rewarding career path:

Researching Potential Employers

The first thing you should do is determine whether you are primarily looking for work in a healthcare institution such as a hospital or a long-term care facility or would rather work in private residences, either through a placement agency or by getting hired directly by clients. It’s a good idea to focus on the type of work you want but keep all options open in your search.

Resources for personal support worker course graduates looking for work include:

  • PersonalSupportWorkerHQ.com: This site provides, among other resources, a listing of hospitals in Ontario hiring PSWs.
  • Job Search Websites: It’s a good idea to check out sites like indeed.ca and jobboom.com for postings and when searching for individual clients. Classifieds sites like Kijiji should also not be ignored.

Preparing for the Interview

When you’ve landed an interview, it’s important that you go into it prepared. Some good tips for prospective personal support workers to remember are:

  • Research your potential employer
  • Be able to list and know your relevant skills
  • Be able to explain how your education has prepared you for this work
  • Do a mock interview
  • Dress professionally and leave early

Possible Interview Questions

Interviewing for a position as a PSW is generally a very in-depth process, which makes sense considering the highly personal nature of the work. Potential employers want to be sure that they’re hiring the right person for the job. Here are some questions you may hear at a PSW job interview:

  • If a resident/your patient falls, what will you do? In the case of an institution, it is best to familiarize yourself with their safety protocols. One possible good responses could be “stay with the patient and call for help, then help transfer them to a bed or chair safely.”
  • How do you care for a palliative patient? Your response should mention that you would care for them with the upmost dignity and respect, in accordance with their religious practises, treating them with warmth and empathy while respecting their privacy.
  • What are a resident’s rights? There are over 25 rights people who live in Ontario long-term care facilities have legally. These include the right to be protected from abuse and neglect, have a safe and clean home and be cared for in a manner consistent with their beliefs. It is important to know all the rights before going to a job interview in a long-term care facility.

Where would you prefer to work as a PSW, and what steps will you take to get there?

Finding Work as a Personal Support Worker

2017-06-22 by NAHB

Personal-Support-Worker-TrainingOnce you have completed your personal support worker training and find it’s time to go out and get a job that can put what you learned in psw courses to good use, you’ll need a solid game plan. Here are some suggestions to get you started on this rewarding career path:

Researching Potential Employers

The first thing you should do is determine whether you are primarily looking for work in a healthcare institution such as a hospital or a long-term care facility or would rather work in private residences, either through a placement agency or by getting hired directly by clients. It’s a good idea to focus on the type of work you want but keep all options open in your search.

Resources for personal support worker course graduates looking for work include:

  • PersonalSupportWorkerHQ.com: This site provides, among other resources, a listing of hospitals in Ontario hiring PSWs.
  • Job Search Websites: It’s a good idea to check out sites like indeed.ca and jobboom.com for postings and when searching for individual clients. Classifieds sites like Kijiji should also not be ignored.

Preparing for the Interview

When you’ve landed an interview, it’s important that you go into it prepared. Some good tips for prospective personal support workers to remember are:

  • Research your potential employer
  • Be able to list and know your relevant skills
  • Be able to explain how your education has prepared you for this work
  • Do a mock interview
  • Dress professionally and leave early

Possible Interview Questions

Interviewing for a position as a PSW is generally a very in-depth process, which makes sense considering the highly personal nature of the work. Potential employers want to be sure that they’re hiring the right person for the job. Here are some questions you may hear at a PSW job interview:

  • If a resident/your patient falls, what will you do? In the case of an institution, it is best to familiarize yourself with their safety protocols. One possible good responses could be “stay with the patient and call for help, then help transfer them to a bed or chair safely.”
  • How do you care for a palliative patient? Your response should mention that you would care for them with the upmost dignity and respect, in accordance with their religious practises, treating them with warmth and empathy while respecting their privacy.
  • What are a resident’s rights? There are over 25 rights people who live in Ontario long-term care facilities have legally. These include the right to be protected from abuse and neglect, have a safe and clean home and be cared for in a manner consistent with their beliefs. It is important to know all the rights before going to a job interview in a long-term care facility.

Where would you prefer to work as a PSW, and what steps will you take to get there?

PSWs within Ontario: A SMART CAREER CHOICE

2016-05-25 by NAHB

PSW training

“We know that Ontarians would prefer to receive care in their own homes and communities and Personal Support Workers play a critical role in making this possible. Our government is committed to working closely with our partners to better support PSWs, including improvements to their wages in recognition of the important role they play in our health care system.”

– Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care

According to the Government of Ontario, a Personal Support Worker (otherwise known as a PSW) is an individual who assists those with Activities of Daily Living (ADL’s). Often associated with the elderly, a PSW may also work with children and other vulnerable members of society.  Under the direction of a Registered Nurse (RN) or Registered Practical Nurse (RPN), a PSW helps to aid in the care and needs for their client as stated in their client/resident’s care plan.  Duties often include dressing, bathing, toileting, transferring, emotional/physical/mental support, companionship etc.  Personal Support Workers are front line workers and are often the first professionals to notice changes in a client’s well being.  Personal Support Workers are a VITAL and IMPORTANT part of the booming healthcare industry found within Ontario and all of Canada.

National Academy of Health & Business, established in 1979 has been providing the necessary career training for students looking to work within the Ontario healthcare sector and specifically, the PSW sector. Our school continuously strives to ensure all graduates from the Personal Support Worker certificate program are equipped with the most advanced skills in order to excel within this booming workforce in Ontario.

There are approximately 100,000 Personal Support Workers employed across Ontario’s booming healthcare industry and these numbers continue to grow. Due to the increasing numbers of the elderly population in Ontario, approximately 34,000 Personal Support Workers are employed within the home and community care sector. With the elderly population on the rise, the government of Ontario has been consistently taking necessary steps to help attract and retain the best Personal Support Workers in the industry. With the help of our government combined with the high standard of training offered within a National Academy program, NAHB Personal Support Worker students are often hired immediately upon graduation. In addition, the Government of Ontario continues to implement the PSW Workforce Stabilization Strategy including initiatives such as:

  • Developing options to enhance full-time and permanent employment
  • Helping new graduates transition successfully into jobs within the home and community care industry through on-the-job orientation
  • And strengthening profession leadership in the sector

These initiatives have been directly influencing the successful placement and hiring of National Academy students. To find out more about the Personal Support Worker Certificate Program and discovering if this is the right career path for you, contact National Academy of Health & Business today. Since 1979, we have been offering a life of success in one year or less.

Individualized Care: An Important Part of Personal Support Worker Training

2015-12-09 by NAHB

Personal support worker training

Individualized care is a common method that personal support workers (PSWs) use to provide care to patients. This technique focuses on patients as individuals, and steers PSWs away from simply completing the mandatory tasks required of them. Professional PSWs know that individualized care involves putting patients and their families first, and considering their valuable feedback when making important decisions—like choosing the best ways to provide care, for example. It also means that PSWs should consider their patients’ values, backgrounds, family situations, lifestyles, and social circumstances in order to best work with them in developing appropriate and rewarding solutions.

Because individualized care has to be applied to the needs of different individuals, it cannot be defined in a single way. If you’re planning to pursue a personal support worker career, read on to learn how you can incorporate more of an individualized approach once you break into the field.

Personal Support Worker Training Teaches Students to Get to Know Patients

The basic philosophy behind individualized care is that everybody matters. Once you begin your career, after completing your personal support worker training, it’ll be important to take the time to get to know each individual you care for. When providing home care, the early stages of patient relationships are an excellent time to better connect with them.

PSWs are often required to help patients with meal preparation. When planning meals with your patients, ask them what some of their favorite dishes are. Perhaps they enjoy certain foods that you don’t necessarily know how to prepare. If this is the case, you might ask them to share some of their family recipes with you. If you take the extra steps needed to prepare a meal that your patients will enjoy, not only will you be providing good individualized care, but you will also be learning something new!

Personal support worker courses

Connecting with people could be as simple as learning all about their favorite foods.

Always try to keep conversations going during your visits. Whether you’re helping patients with bathing and grooming, or helping them take their medication for the day, speak to them as though you are getting to know a new friend. Ask them about their interests, families and friends. Talking with your patients rather than at them will set a warm tone, which can help you both look forward to your visits together.

Personal Support Worker Courses Teach Students to Make Many Connections

Another great way to get to know patients better is to connect with their immediate circle. Earning your personal support worker diploma will make you an important part of a health care team. Therefore, speaking with doctors, pharmacists, and other health care professionals can give you some tremendous insight into how to provide individualized care.

Does your patient have any medical conditions that cause physical discomfort? Does their medication have any side-effects that would make them need more rest? Obtaining answers from health practitioners can really help you fine-tune your approach for your following visits.

Family members also know the story of their beloved relative’s medical history, personal preferences, moods, habits and more. Gathering bits of information about patients from family members can broaden your understanding of patients and help them feel confident that they are in good hands.

Broaden your employment opportunities by enrolling in personal support worker courses at a leading career college.

Visit NAHB to learn more about our training programs or to speak with an advisor.

The Benefits of Working With Elderly Patients

2015-08-26 by NAHB

personal support worker training

Supporting the elderly members of your community can result in amazing benefits for both your patients and yourself. Those who pursue careers in elderly care build close relationships with a variety of wonderful and interesting people. This lets them find personal and professional fulfillment while giving back to the generations that had a hand in building today’s world.

If you are planning to enroll in personal support worker courses, or you have already started your program, read on to learn some of the most valuable parts of working in elderly patient support.

PSWs Greatly Impact the Lives of Individual Patients

Dedicating your time to helping an elderly person in need will make a real difference in that person’s life. Elderly patients and nursing home residents truly need the services you will learn to provide. Without personal support workers (PSW), their comfort and confidence might decline.

These patients may have difficulty bathing, dressing, cooking, eating, or independently caring for their health. PSWs often advocate for their needs, and even take note of a patient’s temperature and blood pressure—all to ensure that they’re as healthy and happy as possible. PSWs become the vital ingredient for an elderly person’s best possible life.

Support Professionals Earn Gratitude Through Providing Compassionate Care

PSW courses will teach you just how much value you’ll be adding to your patients’ lives, but today’s support workers attest that you’ll often hear it from the patients themselves. Smiling faces and heartfelt appreciation remind support professionals that they’re making a difference, and help keep them motivated to continue their care work.

A personal support worker’s frequent presence and kind, warm nature can also become an important part of their patient’s social lives. Often, a friendly appointment or visit is the highlight of a patient’s day. Your presence can make the difference between a lonely patient and a happy, fulfilled one. This means you’ll be greeted as a friend each time you enter your workplace, something not many modern professionals get to experience.

PSWs Receive Continued Education through Trust and “Time Travel”

While personal support worker training will teach you how best to provide elderly care, your education is just beginning at graduation. Personal care workers have the unique opportunity to learn every single day, from experience, colleagues, and especially their individual patients.

Working with people who have varying ages and longstanding memories can enrich your understanding and appreciation for times long past.

If you’re passionate about supporting elderly members of your family or community, you’ll know that those who’ve lived long lives can offer incredible lessons to those willing to listen. PSW professionals can build trusting relationships with these incredible people, gathering stories of historical events and individual cultural legacies that can span decades upon decades. You can’t get these genuinely touching connections to the past anywhere else.

Job Security for Personal Support Workers

If you’re interested in earning a personal support worker diploma, you probably aren’t doing it just for yourself. Students enrolled in PSW programs tend to be compassionate people, likely to put others’ needs before their own. However, job security is an undeniable added benefit to earning this diploma and supporting others.

These days, people are living longer—needing infrastructure to provide them with a high quality of life throughout the duration of their retirements. As the post-WWII baby boomer generation reaches closer to their golden years, the sector is quickly growing to accommodate them. In fact, there is no better time to become certified in personal support work.

Are you interested in enrolling in personal support worker courses? Visit NAHB for more information or to speak with an advisor. 

The 6 Most Common Physiotherapy Treatments

2015-03-04 by NAHB

Physiotherapist assistant courses

If you’ve ever been in a car accident, or suffered from a sports injury, you may have received physiotherapy to aid in the healing process. Physiotherapy is also applied to patients with amputations, arthritis, strains (especially in the spine), or who have had any sort of medical operation. Physiotherapy helps make movement and everyday living easier for a patient through a series of treatments that are tailored to each patient’s needs. If you’re thinking of becoming a physiotherapist assistant, here are some of the most common treatments you’ll discover in your physiotherapist assistant courses, and the benefits associated with each technique.

Range of Motion (ROM) Exercises

Although rest is often prescribed during preliminary stages of recovery from broken bones or surgery, extended periods of immobility may actually prolong or thwart the healing process. For this reason, physiotherapists often prescribe range of motion exercises to promote movement, encourage joint mobility and facilitate circulation. Frequently moving the affected joints and muscles will prevent muscle atrophy and related postural problems. ROM exercises are used by a range of healthcare practitioners – for example, students learn range of motion techniques in personal support worker training to help patients with restricted mobility improve their flexibility and maintain their independence.

Soft Tissue Mobilization

Also referred to as therapeutic massage, soft tissue mobilization can help relax a patient’s muscles and reduce swelling in certain areas, making this treatment excellent for relieving pain associated with athletic injuries. Soft tissue massage also helps circulate blood and lymph flow, and reduce tissue swelling around the inflamed joints.

Physiotherapist assistant coursesElectrotherapy

Electrotherapy is a more recent evolution of energy-based physiotherapy techniques. In this form of treatment, electrical stimulation is provided by attaching electrodes to the skin. The electrodes cause the muscles to shorten, which in turn helps prevent atrophy—best used in patient with paralysis or severely reduced range of motion. Electrotherapy may also be used in conjunction with laser and ultrasound therapy.

Cryotherapy and Heat Therapy

Sore, stiff muscles are a common complaint of both people with desk jobs and professional athletes. If a patient complains of muscle tightness anywhere on their body, it may be beneficial to apply heat or cold to the aggravated areas. Heat therapy includes the application of hot packs or even paraffin wax. Cryotherapy may involve ice pack application or an ice massage.

Physiotherapist assistant coursesKinesio Taping

Anyone studying to become a physiotherapist assistant is probably familiar with the colourful, neon tape that is sometimes used on patients. Kinesio tape can be applied straight to the skin, and is a great way to stabilize the joints and muscles while the patient undergoes treatment. Additionally, the flexibility of the tape means that it doesn’t interfere with range of motion exercises, making it a perfect tool to use when stretching and flexing muscles.

Therapeutic Ultrasound

While ultrasound isn’t normally associated with physiotherapy, in recent years, doctors have been able to utilize sound waves to treat injuries in the body. Ultrasound frequency provides a gentle method for targeting damaged tissue with soft beams. Like a mini massage, the sound waves of the ultrasound stimulate and are absorbed by the ligaments, tendons and fascia. This treatment can be used for patients suffering from arthritis, tendonitis and muscle strain.

Do you know of any other new physiotherapy treatments?

Maintaining Patient Safety as a PSW

2015-02-04 by NAHB

Personal support worker course

A personal support worker is responsible for the well-being of someone who is no longer able to care for themselves. Upon completing your PSW courses, this kind of responsibility may seem overwhelming; however, ensuring the proper care of others can be an extremely rewarding experience. Being a PSW is a unique line of health care work, because the bond you form with your patients is able to grow and flourish over time. Often, you will become one of their dearest friends.

A personal support worker also has the responsibility of being aware of the dangers facing their patients. Some of these dangers can come from seemingly innocuous objects around the house, which can easily be safeguarded. Other times, the threats come from other family members in the form of abuse or neglect. In any case, your personal support worker training will help you recognize these dangers in order to provide the utmost safety and wellbeing for your clients.

Dangers Around the House

The most common household injuries are caused by falling down the stairs. For patients who may be suffering memory loss, injuries on the stairs can happen for reasons as simple as forgetting the way to the bathroom at night. A PSW may suggest that a patient install night lights in their hallways to avoid such incidences.

A common danger for those with restricted mobility is slippery floors. This could be an oil spill in the kitchen or a slippery bathtub. To keep a patient safe, a PSW should make sure the house is kept clean, and suggest that the patient have railings installed in the shower, paired with a safety-grip shower mat.

Elderly Abuse

It’s important to note that elderly abuse can come in many forms, be it physical, psychological or sexual. There are certain telling symptoms a PSW will be able to recognize as a result of their personal support worker courses. If you notice inexplicable scars, bruises or other injuries on your patient, they may be suffering physical abuse by someone close to them.

Sometimes, the elderly patient may not be able to remember who caused the injuries. In other instances, they are hiding the truth to protect a loved one who may be suffering from mental or psychological distress. If a patient’s family refuses to see you alone, this could also be an indication of problems.

Psychological symptoms of abuse may be harder to recognize. If a PSW witnesses a relative speaking sternly or cruelly to the patient, it may be necessary to speak to them about their behaviour. If it is clear this is an ongoing pattern, a personal support worker should look for ways to assist the patient and remove them from the situation.

Financial Exploitation

A wealthy patient whose mind may be slipping into dementia can be taken advantage of by family or friends. Unexplained withdrawals of money or suddenly missing valuables may be a sign that the patient’s condition is being taken advantage of. While these instances are rare, it can be necessary for the PSW to step up in these situations, as the patient may be unable to themselves.

Do you know any other ways a PSW can keep help maintain a patient’s safety?

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