A nursing home, convalescent home, skilled nursing facility, care home, rest home or intermediate care provides a type of residential care. It is a place of residence for people who require continual nursing care and have significant difficulty coping with the activities of daily living. Nursing aides and skilled nurses are usually available 24 hours a day, residents include the elderly and younger adults with physical or mental disabilities. Residents in a nursing facility may also receive physical, occupational. Some nursing homes assist people with needs, such as Alzheimer patients. Residents may have legal rights depending on the nation the facility is in. Before the Industrial Revolution, elderly care was largely in the hands of the family who would support elderly relatives who could no longer do so themselves, charitable institutions and parish poor relief were other sources of care. The first government attempts at providing basic care for the elderly, the New Poor Law curbed the cost of poor relief, which had been spiralling throughout the previous decades, and led to the creation of workhouses for those who were unemployed. Most workers in the workhouse were set tasks such as breaking stones, bone crushing to produce fertilizer, by the late 1840s most workhouses outside London and the larger provincial towns housed only the incapable, elderly and sick. By the end of the only about 20 per cent admitted to workhouses were unemployed or destitute. The Local Government Act of 1929 gave local authorities the power to take over workhouse infirmaries as municipal hospitals and elderly care homes, although the Act formally abolished the workhouse system in 1930, many workhouses, renamed Public Assistance Institutions, continued under the control of local county councils. It was not until the National Assistance Act of 1948 that the last vestiges of the Poor Law disappeared, in Britain in the 1950s and 60s, the quality of nursing care steadily improved, with the mandatory introduction of central heating, single rooms and en-suite lavatories. In most jurisdictions, nursing homes are required to provide staff to adequately care for residents. Once a patient has moved into the home, their relatives may not have significant contact with the administration team. Depending on the size of the home, the administration staff may be very small, consisting of only a handful or people. In most countries, nursing home administrators are required to be licensed to run nursing facilities, the direct care staff have direct, daily contact with the patient. This includes registered nurses, licensed practical nurses and nursing assistants, some staff members focus solely on caring for the buildings and grounds. Custodians, maintenance staff, and groundskeepers, for example, keep the inside and outside of the building in clean, additional support personnel also include people who may have some contact with the patient in the nursing home, but it may not be daily or even regularly
Image: US Navy 080808 N 3271W 046 Rear Adm. James A. Symonds, commander, Navy Region Northwest, visits with a resident of the nursing home care center at Spokane Veterans Administration Hospital
Poorhouses/workhouses were the first implemented national framework to provide a basic level of care to the old and infirm. Pictured, is "The workroom at St James's workhouse" from The Microcosm of London (1808).
Image: Unit visits Nursing Home (23444741899)
Image: The Trained nurse and hospital review (1888) (14761734434)