By Steve Moran

We asked senior living professionals, residents, and their families to give us a list of things that senior living operators do that they think are OK, maybe even think are great ideas, but are, in reality, awful. Here is the list:

  1. Assign seating for residents during meals and activities.
  2. Create mandated break times that help the community but are terrible for staff — like a lunch break at 10 am or 2 pm.
  3. Set break times for staff instead of at times that works for them and what they are doing at the time.
  4. Set narrow meal times for residents.
  5. Impose medication times that are terrible for residents (is it ever okay to have a 6 or 7 am med pass time?)
  6. Allow bullying to happen (residents on resident, resident on team member, or team member to team member).
  7. Accept a culture of negativity (including leaders).
  8. Require all memory care residents to be enrolled in a hospice program.
  9. Not allow medical or recreational use of marijuana.
  10. Prohibit families from visiting if there are any active Covid cases.
  11. Promote the idea that risk reduction/elimination is the most important job of the community.
  12. Adopt QMs that do not really indicate quality (though not sure most communities think this is a good idea).
  13. Allow those who abuse to avoid significant personal consequences.
  14. Require that a resident can give away assets and be denied Medicaid, but discharge for non-payment may not be allowed if discharge to the family is “unsafe”.
  15. “Force” residents to sign a one-sided contract that gives nearly all rights to the community.
  16. Prohibit hanging around outside the dining room prior to meals.
  17. Prohibit alcohol or limit access to alcohol.
  18. Require masks when residents are sitting next to each other in the living room or in an activity, but no masks when they’re sitting together at meals.
  19. Require doctor’s orders for alcohol.
  20. Prohibit residents from working in communities.
  21. Disallowing residents from leading programs.
  22. Limit the number of rolls of toilet paper a resident gets each week.
  23. Take residents’ suggestions lightly.
  24. Hold special events that need to be staffed by salaried leaders with no consideration for the needs of those being required to stay late.
  25. Maintain policies forbidding romantic relationships between team members.
  26. Keep a resident at a lower level of care (or higher level of care) for economic reasons. 

What would you add to this list?