Question

Case Study #1: Mr Raffi Hagopian Baltimore, Maryland: The winter sun strained to enter through the...

Case Study #1: Mr Raffi Hagopian

Baltimore, Maryland: The winter sun strained to enter through the grimy window of the eleventh floor studio apartment where Raffi Hagopian, seventy-nine, was beginning to awaken underneath the broken acrylic electric blanket which barely insulates him from the fifty-five degree temperature in the room.

For Mr. Hagopian and millions of other elderly poor who survive on meager social security checks, this is the most risky time of the month--the week before the next check arrives and when this months money is completely gone.

Until the next check arrives in five days, Mr. Hagopian has no clean underwear or shirt or pants to change into. His towels and sheets are also soiled, rendering them unusable for the moment. His coins for the laundry were used up a week ago.

His only food is packets of fast food condimentsmayonnaise and mustard and cellophane wrapped hot sauce. His only appliance is a used one-burner hot plate. There is no stove or refrigerator in the room. Down the hall, the sink and toilet and single shower are shared, in turn, by his neighbors who are mostly young couples with small children. Dressing quickly, he knows that the cold air in the room will further irritate his sore throat and watering eyes. He is embarrassed by his need to go to the neighborhood dining room where he will receive yet another donated meal and have to ask the volunteers for permission to use the bathrooms hot water, hand soap, and paper towels in order to clean himself.

An introvert by nature, Mr. Hagopian is a prisoner of his own shyness, who has survived adversity with a tenacious independence. His only socializing is intermittent and casual with the teenage volunteers and members of their parents generation at the neighborhood church dining hall. Yet, there has never been an occasion when he has felt comfortable asking these well-intentioned volunteers to help him problem-solve his basic need for services and information. And his only occasional appearance at the dining hall makes the churchs outreach more difficult to achieve.

Ironically, Mr. Hagopian worked his entire adult life, supporting a wife and son (both of whom died in the 1970s) until a work-related disability forced his retirement at age sixty-seven. He rarely received health benefits from his employers, and since his retirement he is unfamiliar with how to access medical services, including physical therapy needed for his disability. He has not had his eyes examined, his teeth cleaned, or a physical examination for more than fifteen years. He is reluctant to use the city bus system for fear of becoming lost or disoriented if he leaves these familiar surroundings. He fears for his safety when ever he goes out at night.

Like many of his generation, Mr. Hagopians isolation is a result of several factors, including a rugged individualism honed by years of blue collar work ethic and an aversion to asking for public assistance of any kind. Yet, his current living situation is unmanageable without some intervention that will provide medical, nutritional, and other essential services to which he is entitled but is not currently receiving.


Case Study #2: Mrs. Laura Templeton

Vallejo, California: In the gray ghetto of the largely deserted town center, the seventy-three year old former employee of the C & H Sugar refinery worries that her meager pension will not keep up with the rent increase she expects for her hotel room. Mrs. Templeton is a recently widowed retiree whose savings were depleted along with her home equity in order to keep her husband, who suffered from Alzheimers disease, at home in her care until his death.

Hoping to find at least part-time work to supplement her income, she moved from the company town of Crockett, CA, to nearby Vallejo in the late 1980s. However, the citys economic prosperity was critically depressed with the closure of its principal employer Mare Island Naval Shipyard a San Francisco Bay Area naval installation which had employed thousands of skilled workers on a 24-hour schedule. Its closure closely coincided with her relocation and eliminated her prospects of finding work as a housekeeper or child care provider for one of the many two-income Mare Island families with small children. Now, she is stuck in a downtown area that has lost many of its small businesses to which Mrs. Templeton could walk from her apartment.

She faces a whole new set of challenges: the unpredictability of this place and a lack of knowledge of how to access the services that might guide her through this time of transition toward independence. In fact, the city has moved its offices away from the center of the downtown in order to meet the needs of families in neighborhoods to the east of the interstate highway that divides old town from new developments. There is public transportation; however, Mrs. Templeton is confused by the system and afraid of becoming lost in one of the more volatile neighborhoods to the north of the town center.

She often skips meals rather than going out alone at night. The prices and quality of food in the neighborhood convenience markets limit her ability to shop for a balanced diet and to budget her money for other purposes. Mrs. Templeton is isolated and invisible to those who might have services to address at least some of her needs.


Case Study #3: Mr. Jose Flores

Chimayo, New Mexico: As a young child in the 1920s, Mr. Flores emigrated from the Philippines along with his father, uncle, and two older brothers. Although he has a working knowledge of English, Mr. Flores never received formal schooling in either Tagalog or English; therefore, he is reluctant to sign anything he cannot read or to reveal to strangers the extent to which he is illiterate.

Instead of attending school, Mr. Flores worked in the agriculture fields of the American Southwest, moving constantly from rural farm to orchard across six states in a seasonal cycle that made one year blend seamlessly with the next. Over the years, he has picked everything from tomatoes and strawberries to pecans and cotton.

Due to the Asian exclusion acts and other discriminatory practices in the 19th and 20th centuries that forbade Filipino workers from marrying outside of their own culture and the immigration policies which made it nearly impossible to unite separated families or to allow for unmarried females to enter the country, Mr. Flores never married. In fact, he lost contact with many relatives due to his lack of formal education and the missed opportunities for written communication.

The years of abusive working conditions the lack of sanitation and nutritious food, the rigors of stoop labor, and the exposure to pesticides in the field have taken their toll on Mr. Flores overall health and sense of well-being.

He is reclusive, living alone on land that is physically near an urban center, but the layout of Santa Fe is just too confusing for him to access. His small savings will not keep him warm and fed for more than another year.

QUESTIONS: ---

a. What issues do these case studies raise for you about human dignity? About the relationship between human rights and human needs? Between rights and responsibilities?

b. Do these factors affect the making of local and national policies aimed at helping the elderly achieve full human rights? Consider other factors.

compassion

consensus

social class attitudes

economic/financial considerations

silence/invisibility

media treatment

c. Would Raffi Hagopian, Laura Templeton, and Jose Flores (the cases in Handout 2, Three Case Studies) find support for their needs in your community?

Are there people with similar concerns living in your community? What support do they get and from whom?

Are there elderly clients of social services agencies who can help them assess the services from a human rights perspective?

Is there anything that the participant group can do to promote and defend the human rights of the elderly poor in their community?

Homework Answers

Answer #1

(a) Issues of security against old age, disability and undire circumstances. There are no sufficient retire benefits and with that job security even for an immigrant and a local, one has to live with such circumstances which reduces the ability of the person to earn respect and have a decent living. Without stable income there is no human dignity and human rights fail to meet up to the expectations of human needs. Living a decent life after working for a lifetime is a social right which is lacking and the state has the responsibility of giving out a decent social security net.

(b) Compassion plays a very important role in making local and national policies as this is the framework which makes social activists demand for social change.

Consensus is another important factor without which the acts would go on circulating and there would be no real change.

Social class attitudes regarding the suffering plays a key role in bringing about policies which benefit the elderly.

Economic/financial considerations play a central role in making policies as the larger these issues, larger is the need to bring about a change in terms of money being allocated and the health insurance.

Silence/Invisibility of the affected audience does not bring the hardships to the other audience which leads to limited policies being framed in order to help them and limited awareness.

Media treatment acts as a catalyst in the process to make such policies, as the visibility of the media and how the hardships are portrayed plays a key role in framing accurate policies.

% of total population which are under social security also plays a key role in making policies as the higher the proportion higher the voting power in their hand, leading to policies being framed for their advantage.

(c) No they would not find support unless there are non government organisations looking after such people's needs.

Yes, there are people living in the community and they get support from the family or distant relatives.

Yes, the elderly clients do help them assess the services in order to bring efficiency.

They can create awareness by analysing the financial hardships they go through and focusing on bringing it to the awareness of the politicians and bringing about as much change as possible in reducing the hardships they face.

Know the answer?
Your Answer:

Post as a guest

Your Name:

What's your source?

Earn Coins

Coins can be redeemed for fabulous gifts.

Not the answer you're looking for?
Ask your own homework help question
Similar Questions
CHINESE CASE STUDY #1 An elderly, Asian-looking man is admitted to the emergency room with chest...
CHINESE CASE STUDY #1 An elderly, Asian-looking man is admitted to the emergency room with chest pain; difficulty breathing; diaphoresis; vomiting; pale, cold, clammy skin; and apprehension. Three people, speaking a mixture of English and a foreign language to one another, accompany him. The nurse tries to speak English with the man, but he cannot understand anything she says. Accompanying the elderly man are two women (one elderly and very upset and one younger who stands back from the other...
Mr. Wong is a 78-year-old male from mainland China, who has been admitted for rehabilitation following...
Mr. Wong is a 78-year-old male from mainland China, who has been admitted for rehabilitation following total hip replacement surgery. He has a poor appetite, has experienced weight loss, and has been unable to participate in physical therapy. Thus, he is not meeting his goals for rehabilitation. No evidence exists to suggest an underlying disease process. Ms. Faye, the nurse assigned to care for Mr. Wong is interested in learning what might be going on with Mr. Wong to better...
Mr. Wong is a 78-year-old male from mainland China, who has been admitted for rehabilitation following...
Mr. Wong is a 78-year-old male from mainland China, who has been admitted for rehabilitation following total hip replacement surgery. He has a poor appetite, has experienced weight loss, and has been unable to participate in physical therapy. Thus, he is not meeting his goals for rehabilitation. No evidence exists to suggest an underlying disease process. Ms. Faye, the nurse assigned to care for Mr. Wong is interested in learning what might be going on with Mr. Wong to better...
Read the case study, then answer the questions that follow. Lenny recently moved into a 96-bed...
Read the case study, then answer the questions that follow. Lenny recently moved into a 96-bed aged care facility in the town he has lived in for the past 20 years. The home is a non-profit organization run by one of the main church groups. Lenny has Parkinson’s disease and is happy that he is still able to move around the home in his wheelchair, mostly unassisted. After Lenny settles in, the lifestyle coordinator meets him to develop a lifestyle...
Case Study: A 50-year old male, who is in a hospital rehab due to escalation of...
Case Study: A 50-year old male, who is in a hospital rehab due to escalation of his bipolar behaviors. Upon entering the milieu, he is playing air guitar, but no music is playing in the room. He sees the nurse, and runs over to her and says, “I’m jamming with Mick Jagger.” He starts strumming his fingers in the air again on his imaginary guitar. You also notice that he has a plate of untouched food that is old and...
Case 1: Mr. Parker is an 88-year-old resident of your LTC home with end-stage Alzheimer’s. He...
Case 1: Mr. Parker is an 88-year-old resident of your LTC home with end-stage Alzheimer’s. He is wheelchair bound and spends most of his days sleeping in his wheelchair near a window facing the garden. He needs to be spoon fed but has recently started to refuse to eat. Mr. Parker has three children, one of whom is very involved in the care of her father. The team approaches the daughter about her father refusing to eat, and feels that...
Case Study, Chapter 9, Chronic Illness and Disability 1. Mr. Edwards is 20-year-old male patient who...
Case Study, Chapter 9, Chronic Illness and Disability 1. Mr. Edwards is 20-year-old male patient who is admitted for treatment of recurring pyelonephritis (kidney infection) and surgical treatment of a urinary stricture, which has decreased the urinary stream. Mr. Edwards has paraplegia; he is paralyzed from the waist down secondary to an automobile accident when he was 16. He came by ambulance to the hospital, leaving his wheelchair and wheelchair pressure-relieving cushion at home. According to the nursing history, the...
Urinary Incontinence Case Study: Mrs. Kingsley A Case Study for Nursing Staff Goals: 1) Raise awareness...
Urinary Incontinence Case Study: Mrs. Kingsley A Case Study for Nursing Staff Goals: 1) Raise awareness of value of UI assessment 2) Raise awareness of resident quality of life related to UI 3) Raise awareness of improving dialogue between all levels of nursing staff and residents pertaining to UI 4) Raise awareness of the value of toileting programs for residents Part I Mrs. Kingsley moved into Gardens on the Green Care Center this afternoon. Her husband of 54 years suffered...
The case involves an elderly couple who are both in a nursing home. The husband has...
The case involves an elderly couple who are both in a nursing home. The husband has a heart attack and the wife is brought from another floor. Before she can get to the room, the man dies, but to spare the woman pain, the staff allows her to think that he is still alive when he gets to the room. In that she is frail and feeble, with poor eyesight, she does not know that she is dead. The woman...
Case Scenario: Mr S. is is a 38-year-old patient who has been admitted it to the...
Case Scenario: Mr S. is is a 38-year-old patient who has been admitted it to the burn center with full thickness burns over 50% of his body. He was working on the truck when he caught fire, trapping him. He has no prior health issues, except for possibly alcoholism. The specialist gave beginning orders of IV therapy or lactated ringer running wide-open, pain medications, constant monitoring her blood pressure, oxygen saturation, and lab work every two hours. Question: How might...