NY Times Article on a Brief Nursing Home Stay

Here’s an interesting article on a brief nursing home stay by a medical student as part of her training.

Experiencing Life, Briefly, Inside a Nursing Home

By Katie Zezima

Published: August 23, 2009

MAMARONECK, N.Y. — For 10 days in June, Kristen Murphy chose to live somewhere she and many others fear: a nursing home.

Ms. Murphy, who is in perfect health, had to learn the best way to navigate a wheelchair around her small room, endure the humiliation that comes with being helped in the bathroom, try to sleep through night checks and become attuned to the emotions of her fellow residents.
And Ms. Murphy, 38, had to explain to friends, family and fellow patients why she was there.
Ms. Murphy, a medical student at the University of New England in Biddeford, Me., who is interested in geriatric medicine, came to New York for a novel program that allowed her to experience life as a nursing home patient.

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2 thoughts on “NY Times Article on a Brief Nursing Home Stay”

  1. I once took a training program teaching staff members how to be sensitive to the needs of residents in nursing homes. It utilized various methods of teaching; experientials, role play, etc. and was very effective. Of course, living it I would have greater impact, but the class has much greater feasibility for a much broader audience.

  2. That class sounds great, Sue. I know there are courses where they teach you what it's like to age by creating the physical sense of low vision, arthritis, etc. I hear it's illuminating.

    I want to take a ride in a Hoyer lift one day and see what all my residents have been talking about.

    I think it would be interesting to have an experiment where one group of trainees/subjects are assigned to be "staff" and another group to be "residents" and for them to live that life for a couple of days and then switch.


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