Better Health: Smart Health Commentary Better Health (TM): smart health commentary

Article Comments

Does Your Parent Need Nursing Home Care?


Watch CBS News Videos Online

One of the great blessings of my life is that my 91-year-old father, whom I dearly love, lives in the apartment building next door.  After sixty-six years of marriage, he’s been living alone since my mother’s death last March. He is still sharp as a tack, as he might say.  I took him to the last game of this year’s World Series at Yankee Stadium and he remembered the score of the only other World Series game he had ever attended: 9-5, New York Yankees over the Brooklyn Dodgers, in 1953.  He reads the paper from front to back and can hold his own in any discussion.  He comes over for dinner frequently, sitting around the kitchen table and eagerly participating in family discussions.  He insists on washing the dishes – a skill that he hid from my mother for most of their marriage.  He has a delicious relationship with my two sons, waiting on the park bench for them as they walk home from school.  He and my wife rendezvous for afternoon movies and popcorn.  He’s an integral part of our lives, still teaching me about life all these years later.

Should a life-devastating medical calamity strike him, he has made his wishes perfectly clear to me.  But what about the huge middle ground?  What if I think he’s losing his ability to live independently but he doesn’t agree with me?  That’s where gut-wrenching decisions often arise.  For this week’s CBS Doc Dot Com, I discuss tough questions like these with Joshua D. Schor, M.D., an expert in geriatric medicine and author of The Nursing Home Guide.  His extremely practical book addresses such topics as:

  • Knowing when a loved one can no longer live alone.
  • Figuring out what kind of facility is the best fit.
  • Choosing the right place and then navigating the system.
  • Understanding commonly used medications.
  • Establishing the right team.
  • Avoiding common pitfalls.

You may also like these posts

Read comments »


Comments are closed.

Return to article »

Latest Interviews

IDEA Labs: Medical Students Take The Lead In Healthcare Innovation

It’s no secret that doctors are disappointed with the way that the U.S. healthcare system is evolving. Most feel helpless about improving their work conditions or solving technical problems in patient care. Fortunately one young medical student was undeterred by the mountain of disappointment carried by his senior clinician mentors…

Read more »

How To Be A Successful Patient: Young Doctors Offer Some Advice

I am proud to be a part of the American Resident Project an initiative that promotes the writing of medical students residents and new physicians as they explore ideas for transforming American health care delivery. I recently had the opportunity to interview three of the writing fellows about how to…

Read more »

See all interviews »

Latest Cartoon

See all cartoons »

Latest Book Reviews

Book Review: Is Empathy Learned By Faking It Till It’s Real?

I m often asked to do book reviews on my blog and I rarely agree to them. This is because it takes me a long time to read a book and then if I don t enjoy it I figure the author would rather me remain silent than publish my…

Read more »

The Spirit Of The Place: Samuel Shem’s New Book May Depress You

When I was in medical school I read Samuel Shem s House Of God as a right of passage. At the time I found it to be a cynical yet eerily accurate portrayal of the underbelly of academic medicine. I gained comfort from its gallows humor and it made me…

Read more »

Eat To Save Your Life: Another Half-True Diet Book

I am hesitant to review diet books because they are so often a tangled mess of fact and fiction. Teasing out their truth from falsehood is about as exhausting as delousing a long-haired elementary school student. However after being approached by the authors’ PR agency with the promise of a…

Read more »

See all book reviews »