Essay Sample on Improving Nursing Care to Elderly Patients with Dementia in Hispanic Community

Published: 2023-12-05
Essay Sample on Improving Nursing Care to Elderly Patients with Dementia in Hispanic Community
Essay type:  Problem solution essays
Categories:  Nursing Dementia Human services
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1797 words
15 min read

This paper's chosen issue of discussion entails improving nursing care to elderly patients with dementia in the Hispanic community. Dementia is a condition characterized by severe limitation of performing core activities among the elderly. Traynor et al. (2011) revealed that dementia is a health condition that increases with age, and it is essential to ensure that the world workforce in the health sector is well equipped to have the capability of meeting the needs of older adults with dementia. The healthcare needs of the elderly with dementia are more to the poor and minority communities, such as Hispanics, compared to the whites. Minority races face many challenges when trying to obtain healthcare services due to poverty and marginalization. The barriers to care have resulted in striking disparities in healthcare quality received by patients from the minority races (Juckett, 2013). Nurses must possess specific competencies to ensure that they serve all patients without discrimination and provide care that meets every patient's needs irrespective of their race and age. Having a thorough understanding of the dementia health condition is essential for nurses to enhance their competence in providing adequate care services. The essay examines the subject of dementia among the elderly in the Hispanic community and how nurses can improve the care services provided to this minority population.

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Case Scenario

I was placed for an internship at a general hospital last winter, where I worked under a Registered Nurse manager's supervision. While on duty on a specific day, I recognized the waiting line long as usual. There were many patients with different diseases, and the doctor was calling one after the other. The attending nurse was helping patients to the respective specialists in various departments of the hospital. I was helping with the assessment of patients with non-severe illnesses. As we attended one patient to another, I noticed that there was an elderly patient who had been on the waiting line for more than an hour. After talking to the carer who had accompanied her to the hospital, I realized that the patient had dementia and experienced a lot of pain that needed immediate care from the healthcare professionals. They were also Hispanics and could not express themselves clearly in English. I happened to talk to the nurse on duty about the elderly patient, her ailment, and prompt attention to relieve her pain as she waits for treatment. I realized that the nurse on duty was aware of the patient and not attentive to the patient's needs and the carer. The older woman sat there waiting to be called by the doctor as the carer tried to sympathize with help with every nurse that came outside from the wards. That incident made me realize how nurses in the hospital were less attentive to elderly patients with dementia. After remembering that experience, I consider the subject of nursing care to old adults with dementia in the Hispanic community as an essential topic that can inform people on the need to meet the needs of this minority population through the provision of person-centered care that caters for the needs of the patient and the family as well as not discriminative based on age or race.

Elderly Hispanic Patients and Dementia

The case scenario demonstrates dementia among the elderly in the Hispanic community as a challenging health condition. Nurses neglect older adults with this illness, or healthcare professionals are not keen on addressing their care needs. Dementia is a common illness that makes the elderly to visit healthcare settings frequently. Nurses are primary healthcare providers for old adults with dementia. It is crucial to learn how they ensure to meet dementia patients' need, especially the elderly from the Hispanic community. Their care model is highly dependent on support care workers to deliver respect to the designated patients (Traynor et al., 2011). The needs of old adults with dementia are different from any other population and in different settings. Thus, nurses' role is specific in supporting the effective delivery of care services to the given community. According to Brorson et al. (2014), patients with dementia experience pain at the end of life. Nurses play a huge role in helping them with reducing communicative challenges. They assess, identify, and relieve the pain a patient is experiencing. The complexity of pain relief for patients with dementia at their end of life is a challenge that requires nurses to intervene in helping the vulnerable group.

Knowing the patient, experience in the nursing profession, and the use of pain assessment tools, creating interpersonal relationships, and cooperating with other professionals can play a massive role for nurses to provide efficient care to elderly patients with dementia from the Hispanic community (Institute of Medicine, 1997). They are essential interventions to enable the patient to manage pain due to dementia at the end of life. The nurse has an advocacy role on behalf of the patient to ensure they obtain the required resources and facilities needed in managing their dementia condition at old age. The nurse should know the patient's history, apply professional experience, and work as a team with others in the healthcare setting to effectively communicate the patient details for proper management of pain for old adults with dementia at their end of life. Based on the challenges faced by senior adults with dementia in the Hispanic community, it is essential to assess interventions that nurses can use to improve the delivery of mental health care in their nursing practice for the minority population.

The Importance of Improving the Delivery of Mental Healthcare to the Elderly with Dementia in the Hispanic Community

It is critical to improving mental healthcare to older adults with dementia in the Hispanic community to help achieve the intended health outcomes for the population. The needs of diverse communities in the U.S., such as the Hispanics, immigrants, and other marginalized groups, need to be considered when making and implementing healthcare policies (Perez, 2018). The minority populations in the U.S. face challenges or barriers in accessing care services. Implementing the CARE Act has been met with obstacles and made the health care system complex, especially for the old Hispanics. The minority communities face the wrong time challenges, the nursing staff lacking confidence and knowledge, and low educational levels for families and patients when trying to access healthcare services.

For elderly patients with dementia in Hispanic communities, nurses experience challenges when helping in pain relief. There are limited resources from this population, and the patients may not be in a position to afford the required healthcare services in hospitals (Brorson et al., 2014). This makes nurses feel powerless in obtaining sufficient medication for analgesics, creates ethical dilemmas on the best decision to make for the client, and a feeling of inadequacy when the given analgesia fails to produce the patient's desired effect. The barriers to providing adequate care to Hispanic elderly patients with dementia make nurses feel that they cannot connect with them. That offers reasons for exploring the topic of study to obtain evidence of appropriate interventions that can be used to provide effective nursing care for old adults with dementia in the Hispanic community.

Prevalence of Dementia among the Elderly in the Hispanic community

There is a growing burden of care for Latinos/Hispanics in the U.S. compared to the white communities. According to Llanque & Enrique (2012), it is expected that the number of elderly patients with dementia among the Hispanics in the U.S. will rise from 200,000 to 1.3 million people by the year 2050. It means that large numbers of older adults with dementia will need a caregiver. The minority population requires intervention strategies that will help in caring for older adults with dementia. Wu et al. (2016) noted that the number of Hispanics living with Alzheimer's and other related diseases such as dementia would grow from 379,000 in 2012 to 3.5 million in the year 2060. There are about 8.1 million Hispanic caregivers in the U.S., and only 23% provide care to those with dementia, and other cognitive-related health conditions. Latino families make less use of formal health care services for patients with dementia disease. They rely more on intensive and informal care that is unpaid as compared to non-Hispanic whites (Perez, 2018). Nurses have a role in ensuring a safe transition for old patients with dementia from hospital to home for effective management of the condition with caregivers.

Nursing Interventions to Reduce Barriers and Improve Care

The challenges that old adults with dementia from the Hispanic community face when trying to access nursing care services in general hospitals require interventions that the institution needs to implement to ensure it reduces the barriers for nurses and improve care for the minority population. In Hispanic communities, barriers to accessing effective nursing care for old adults with dementia include language and cultural issues, low literacy, immigration status, and lack of health insurance (Juckett, 2013). In the nursing workforce, a persistence shortage of bicultural and bilingual nurses is highly experienced to help achieve adequate care provision to old adults with dementia in Latino/Hispanic communities in America. Nurses serving Hispanic patients may not be bilingual, and thus they require proper preparation and support on aspects associated with cultural awareness, care planning, avoiding stereotypes, and coordinating Latino families (Perez, 2018). The general hospital can adopt a program for nurses to train them on cultural awareness about different cultural groups and the importance of using an interpreter when they do not understand the patient's language. Such an intervention will reduce the chances of nurses in the hospital ignoring a patient from the Hispanic community, make an effort to understand their care needs and apply person-centered dementia care for the old adult aimed at improving nursing care.

Alternative medicine, such as the use of music by nurses to old adults with dementia in the Hispanic community, can serve as an effective therapeutic intervention. According to Sorrel (2018), music is a healing art when providing dementia care. The hospital can incorporate music in dementia care, whereby nurses can share and enjoy with the patients. The music can be specific from the Hispanic community as it spans in different cultures (Bowell & Bamford, 2018). Playing music that uses the patient's local language and promoting their cultural and religious beliefs can be a strategy to improve nursing care. Even in severe dementia situations, music has been identified as a strategy that institutions provide to patients to enhance their response to treatment and recovery. It means that music has the power to improve the individual lives of those with dementia through the neural relationships created by music interventions. Howland (2016) found out that music provides measurable neurobiological effects that assist in rewarding, motivating, producing pleasure, reducing stress, and improving a person's immunity. Nurses in the hospital can help design and implement music-based interventions as a practical approach to enhancing dementia care for old adults from the Hispanic community.

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Essay Sample on Improving Nursing Care to Elderly Patients with Dementia in Hispanic Community. (2023, Dec 05). Retrieved from

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