The Global Tragedy of Care for the Elderly: When Caring and Empathy becomes a Business for Profit, then, even a Caring Country Fails Miserably
- Kamran Mofid
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Lest We Forget:
In the process of privatisation, marketisation, highest returns to the shareholders, largest bonuses to the CEOs and outsourcing our responsibilities, we have now realised that we have also outsourced our humanity and our humane values.
Is this not the time yet to rethink our broken and inhumane neoliberalised, privatised and deregulated market economy and education model?
Think about it, we will all get old, weak and vulnerable. We will all need love, support, empathy, caring and humanity.
We must all know what it means to be human.
Canada nursing home reels from death of almost half its residents
'Facility in Bobcaygeon, Ontario, emerges as one of most tragic stories
in country’s struggle against Covid-19'-Photo: CBC
‘A retirement home in Canada that lost nearly half its residents to coronavirus is scrambling to protect the remaining healthy inhabitants who lived alongside infected neighbours for nearly two weeks. Pinecrest nursing home, a privately run facility in the town of Bobcaygeon, Ontario, has emerged as one of the country’s deadliest Covid-19 hotspots…’- The Guardian 8 April 2020
‘Infestations, sedation and neglect: Military report details ‘horrific’ living conditions in seniors’ homes
'A Canadian military report released on Tuesday (26 May 2020) chronicles horrific conditions at five long-term care homes in Ontario, ranging from poor infection control practices to the neglect and abuse of residents…’- The Globe and Mail, 27 May 2020
‘Cockroach infections, residents left to wallow in soiled diapers, COVID-19 patients allowed to wander around, forced feeding of the elderly, and a ‘culture of fear to use supplies because those cost money.’...The Star, 27 May 2020
'Members of the Canadian armed forces are seen outside the Eatonville care center in Toronto, Canada, last month.'
Photo: Xinhua/Rex/Shutterstock, Via The Guardian
Canada: neglected residents and rotten food found at care homes hit by Covid-19*
Justin Trudeau describes ‘deeply disturbing’ military report after soldiers visit facilities in Quebec and Ontario
‘Canadian troops deployed to long-term care homes overwhelmed by coronavirus outbreaks found neglected and malnourished residents, rotten food and insect infestations, and a blatant disregard for critical safety protocol, according to a bombshell report from the country’s armed forces.
Military medics were dispatched to long-term care facilities in Quebec and Ontario in late April, with aim of blunting Covid-19 outbreaks among vulnerable populations.
Soldiers deployed to five of Ontario’s worst-hit care homes encountered rotten food, cockroaches and residents in soiled diapers, according to the report published on Tuesday.
At one facility, residents had not been bathed in weeks. At another, staff made “derogatory or inappropriate comments directed at residents'”. Neglect of resident hygiene and health, often leading to infection, was documented at all facilities.
At one point, “patients [were] observed crying for help with staff not responding for 30 mins to over two hours,” the report said.
Justin Trudeau, the prime minister, said: “On reading the deeply disturbing report, I had obviously a range of emotions of anger, of sadness, of frustration, of grief.
“It is extremely troubling, and as I’ve said from the very beginning of this, we need to do a better job of supporting our seniors in long-term care right across the country, through this pandemic and beyond.”
Long-term care homes in Canada, many of which are privately run, have been hit the hardest by the pandemic, with residents making up nearly eight out of 10 Covid-19-related deaths across the country.
The damage has been felt most acutely in Ontario and Quebec, which have the vast majority of the country’s coronavirus cases and fatalities. An estimated 225 people died at the five homes where the military was assisting in Ontario.
The report chronicled widespread “burnout” among staff, a number of whom hadn’t seen family in weeks. The military also found numerous examples of staff showing little knowledge of how to properly wear personal protective equipment when dealing with coronavirus cases.
As his government released the report to the public on Tuesday, an emotional Ontario premier, Doug Ford, called the findings “gut-wrenching” and “shocking”.
“Reading these reports was the hardest thing I’ve done as premier,” said Ford. “What we’re feeling is little compared to the hardship these residents and their families have had to ensure. There’s nothing worse than feeling helpless when it comes to caring for a loved one.” Ford’s mother-in-law, who lives in a long-term care home, was recently diagnosed with Covid-19.
Lest we forget, this is the man that now is shedding crocodile tears:
Ford said investigations have been launched following the report, saying his government would pursue “accountability” and “justice”. One death has been referred to the coroner for investigation into possible criminal charges.
Meanwhile, the Canadian military said today that some 36 members working in long-term care homes in Ontario and Quebec have become sick with Covid-19.
“This tragedy must serve as a wakeup call to our entire country,” said Ford. “It’s no secret that Covid-19 has taken a system with deep problems – a system that has been neglected for years – and pushed it to the brink.”- * The Guardian, 27 May 2020
Just like Canada, here, in Britain, or indeed anywhere else in the world, privatisation is at the heart of the disastrous coronavirus response:
To reverse this inhumanity we need a different model of education
And we need a different economic value and economy. Full stop. Carpe Diem!
At a time of profound crises there must be an opportunity for new vision, new understanding and new thinking. There is a desperate need for new practical ways of relating in an increasingly interdependent global community: a time to re-introduce spirituality, ethics, civility, kindness, humanity and the common good into the debate on globalisation, economics, politics, business, education, international relation and much more.
Surely the time is now to rise and challenge the falsehood and the inhumanity of the ideology that since the early 1980s has cheated and humiliated us by monetising all aspects of our lives, and has stopped us from knowing what it means to be human:
Co-creating The Caring World We Want in the Interest of the Common Good
It’s time to deliver on the goals we’ve set for a more peaceful, resilient, kinder and fairer world