Balanced Long-term Care News Linked to Happiness

Balanced news coverage of long-term care by Axiom News helps healthcare workers keep a positive attitude.

Balanced Long-term Care News Linked to Happiness

Higher staff morale, happier residents and families, are benefits of balanced news, says home administrator

Springdale Country Manor’s Maureen King has seen first-hand the positive effect encouraging news coverage has on long-term care home staff members.

The administrator of the OMNI Health Care-owned long-term care home commends stories told in the OMNIway, the organization’s online publication produced by Axiom News, for engaging staff members and highlighting the good work in the sector.

The same is often not true with other news agencies reporting on the sector.

“Newspapers report negatively (on long-term care). Axiom News reports on the same industry, only they report on a positive reflection,” she says.

Maureen says if mainstream media generated more balanced reporting when covering long-term care issues there would be increased staff morale, happier families and, perhaps, better resident outcomes.

If media took time to take a more positive approach to reporting, the public would know how long-term care is enriching residents’ lives, increasing their mobility through rehabilitation programs and, in some cases, helping residents return home once their health has improved.

Maureen points to recent media coverage of an incident at The Wexford Residence in Toronto, where murder charges were laid against a 72-year-old man after another resident was allegedly assaulted.

If a negative incident happens in a long-term care home, the media has a duty to report it. However, journalists also need to be looking at the underlying causes that lead to adverse incidents. Media agencies also need to realize the detrimental effect not telling the whole story can have on staff, says Maureen.

“Let’s not take away from the fact how tragic the Wexford incident was, but what the media didn’t say was how devastating it was on the staff,” says Maureen.

So, what would happen if media gave equal time to the successes seen in long-term care homes?

“There is no doubt that there would be more morale,” says Maureen. “Everybody responds to a job well done. And do you know who else it would make care better for? The residents. And everything we do is for the residents.”

Many long-term care home staff members see their work as part of a greater social mission. It’s challenging to work in long-term care, and caregivers work in the sector because they’re driven by the challenge to make a difference.

“Trust me, you don’t come here and work every day in this type of environment that’s so challenging if you’re not the type of person who wants to come to work and make a difference in someone’s life,” Maureen says.

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Writer Bio

Deron Hamel's picture
Deron Hamel

Deron joined Axiom News in March 2007, having previously worked as a news reporter for print, online and wire services. He serves as Axiom News’ long-term care pod lead, after several years of writing stories and editorials for our clients in that sector. An award-winning advocacy journalist, Deron has seen first-hand the strengths long-term care brings to the greater health-care sector and through his work he seeks to share successes and best practices.

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