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Elderly Abuse

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Advocacy
In my care support class we learnt a lot about advocating for a patient. Advocacy – a person who relays the wants/needs of an individual who for reasons cannot speak for themselves. Advocacy commences when a person represents the interests of another person. This requires complete loyalty of the person acting as an advocate, who represents the wishes, needs and interests of the patient as if it was your own needs, and what advocacy means: the one that pleads, defends or supports the cause or interest of the patient for whatever reason they cannot speak for themselves or on behalf of someone in their best interest, e.g. someone who has not got a voice/confidents or cannot be heard, e.g. children, elderly, dementia patients. There are different forms of advocacy:
Self-advocacy: is the ability to speak up for yourself and the things that are very important to you, self-advocacy means you are able to ask for what you need and tell other people about your thoughts and feelings. Self-Advocacy means you know your rights and responsibilities, and you are able to make choices and decisions that affect your life. It is important to learn self-advocacy skills because it helps you decide what you want and what to expect. When you have good self-advocacy skills you can have more control and make the life decisions that are best for you. (advocacy.com)
Legal advocacy: involves solicitors protecting their client’s rights and interests in a court of law. i.e. a person’s will or their property.
Citizen advocacy: comprises the supportive activities of trained volunteers who are unpaid and independent, working on behalf of the patients who are not in a position to exercise their own rights. It involves helping a person to express concerns and aspiration. A citizen advocate is an ordinary unpaid citizen and therefore free from conflicts of interest. The advocate is an independent volunteer who articulates and represent the views of the patient as if they were his or her own needs. It is also about the development relationship with someone who is vulnerable or at risk of isolation, this one to one relationship with the person often last long term and occasionally life- long. (healthcare.ie)
Advocacy often requires working through formal decision making for a patient to achieve a better out come to support the interest of the patient. I found this very interesting subject because a lot of elderly people and children do not get heard when they have a problem or suggestion. One way to help formulate a consistent communication message is to prepare a “sixty-second” speech. This is a brief practised speech used to introduce the issue and propose solution and ensure that the listener is walking away with the key points. (Amidei 2010) Sixty-second speech to advocating for nursing
1. Share your name, where you work / department and the patient your representing.
2. Describe the issue you are addressing.
3. Put a human face on the patient you are representing.
4. Describe what the patient would like the person/group to do.
5. Distribute a fact sheet describing the request’s and include the contact details. (Amidei 2010)
I have done a lot of research on the internet and found a lot of information on the HSE website which was interesting as I didn’t know much about advocacy and I also used my class note’s that was giving out by my class tutor Kay Coburn which I think is great because part of the healthcare workers role is also to act as an advocacy for the patient’s, reflecting on the 5 key points there are vital information and you can get your views across without boring the board. The objective is to enable the client to be involved and have a choice in matters that concern their health and welfare. Carers must focus on the ability to always act in the clients best interest, provide friendship and support to the client. Ive learnt that the process may not always be straight forward because complications associated with poor health and disability, the intention must always be to promote the benefits for the client. An Advocate must influence the board by building the case for change but must have all the facts and data to back it up. If I ever have to act as an advocate for someone I would use these 5 key points and I would always put a face to the patient I was representing, and now I realise that I’m an advocate for my three children. Name: Annmarie Donoghue Tutor: Kay Coburn

Bibliography www.advocacy.com www.healthcare.ie www.nhs.ie Class Notes ( Kay Coburn)

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