Saturday, July 31, 2010

Healthcare Urban Legends Test-- Nursing Homes, Health, Senior Citizens

If you have opened forwarded e-mails or “chain letters,” you’ve probably read false information that you thought was true. Believing what you read may have caused you to panic. Wanting to help others, you couldn’t wait to forward the warning, protection prayer, or request for a donation to family and friends. But there’s a more constructive way to deal with this phenomenon. Today’s post offers a brief mental workout to help keep you informed about nursing homes, health issues, and seniors while squashing rumors.

Can you guess which of the following health-related stories are true or false? The correct answers are at the end.

1) While being transported from a nursing home to a doctor’s office for an appointment, an elderly patient died when the gurney to which he was strapped rolled away with him, overturned, and caused a head injury.

2) The artificial sweetener aspartame has been proved responsible for an epidemic of cancer, brain tumors, and multiple sclerosis. This story gives a detailed description of the health dangers of diet drinks.

3) Some senior citizens are choosing to live their retirement years on cruise ships where the amenities are much better and the average costs per day are cheaper than living in nursing homes.

Fortunately, there is a website that can help you decipher what’s true and what isn’t. Many of you are probably aware of, which has been around for years. This website is the Internet reference source for urban legends, folklore, myths, rumors, and misinformation. If you haven’t already, you might want to bookmark this site and check out information you receive. You can delete the hoaxes and end the spreading of false information. 

Answers:     1. True    2. False     3. True

Frances Shani Parker, Author


  1. Frances, I truly appreciate all your input! You put into words what I've been thinking about, about the patients that I am working with.
    Thank you! Ronee

  2. Thanks for commenting, Ronee. I'm glad my input is helpful to you. I wish you and your patients the best.


  3. Life on a cruise ship is certainly an exciting idea to entertain, but a nursing home provides 24/7 care to professional, geriatric nurses. This is one of the reasons a nursing home is more costly.