When people think of all the reasons its impossible to serve on committees that monitor nursing homes and family- and adult-care homes in Wake County, lets hope they carry it one step further. Lets hope they contemplate: What if it were my mother or my family or my friends in such homes? What if I were in such a home?
Yes, that changes things a little. We all want the best of care for those we love, and there are multitudes of facilities in Wake County delivering that kind of care.
But it is a business that cannot go unmonitored. There will always be those few facilities that dont measure up.
The best way to check on these homes is through citizen volunteer committees, one for nursing homes and one for the other types of homes. The problem is, those committees are chronically short of volunteers to check on dozens of homes. A recent News & Observer report, in fact, said the committees are often half-filled.
The potential consequence is easy to see: In some homes, there will be inferior care.
Thankfully, thats not often the case. Laura Winslow is a veteran, and she says shes generally seen only minor problems in eight years as a noble volunteer. But she knows the risks in a shortage of people to do the watching.
The county needs an army of good Laura Winslows who recognize they might be one injury or one illness away from having to move into a care facility. Its a thought that ought to perch on everyones shoulder.
And motivate us to raise a hand to volunteer.