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'Secret' bonus scheme at nursing homes revealed

Karen Holst · 6 Nov 2011, 14:56

Published: 06 Nov 2011 14:56 GMT+01:00

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The bonus programs reportedly reward managers of elderly care facilities who keep tight control on their division’s economy and perform under budget, according to Swedish Television (SVT) documentary, Dokument inifrån, which airs Sunday evening.

An anonymous director described how departments are pitted against each other in competition.

The managers who maintain the best budgets receive one or more months’ salary in bonuses, according to reports by daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter (DN).

“The bonus is something you talk quietly about and is not spread about within the company or to the public,” the manager told SVT.

In addition, the documentary episode reveals that a large number of managers are also enticed to become shareholders in the business, giving them an added stake in cost savings.

Last week employees from a Carema elderly care facility in Stockholm disclosed how major cut backs have meant staff shortages, broken equipment and sometimes no toilet paper.

According to the employees, management solved staff shortages by making personnel from other departments fill in 20 minutes here and there over the course of a day.

Reports from staff and ex-employees of Carema also included situations where toilets couldn’t be sat on due to their filthy state, the questioning of every prescription that would cost the company money, and a failure to address patient concerns.

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For example, the DN reported how a patient’s broken bed led to the requisition of that of another patient’s, who in turn was forced to sleep on the floor for several months.

Carema has thus far chosen not to comment on its bonus programs or allegations of suspected neglect at both Koppargården and Tallbohov elderly care facilities in Järfälla, outside Stockholm.

Karen Holst (kholstmedia@gmail.com)

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Your comments about this article

15:53 November 6, 2011 by ?????
So the money that could be spent for the elderly people's well-being go to the managers for saving these money! And that comes from a country that is considered on the lead of social welfare. Sad,

O tempora o mores
16:40 November 6, 2011 by Douglas Garner
Clearly, operating expense metrics need to be measured against operating standards! The point is to get it done for the best price... not to simply NOT do it!
18:23 November 6, 2011 by Brianito
You are spot on Douglas. What a surprise, Swedish private healthcare, the policies are all the same, save money, no matter what the cost is. Then the patients and the staff, yes, they all suffer too. The shareholders / investors are ripping everyone off blindly with a blatant disregard for the people they are supposed to be representing. These companies need to be thoroughly investigated for serious breaches of mismanagement & ethics, They are putting peoples lives at risk on a daily basis. I would never put any one of family in Swedish private healthcare.
18:59 November 6, 2011 by yourkidding
It's Sweden. Nothing will be done. Another - quote/unquote - "Unfortunate" situation, as the Swedish politicans say.
22:39 November 6, 2011 by McChatter
Carema is sh!t. I had Carema as my local "hospital". Personal GP? I saw him more often in Akut. The best thing about Swedish health care is its PR. Douglas and Brianito are both right. Your kidding is also unfortunately also right. Nothing will be done. The only thing Swedes are good in, as far as health care is concerned, is creating a good legislation. But enforcing that and taking responsibilty....Ho! not so fast!
22:53 November 6, 2011 by StuartM
Disgusting. The responsibility goes right to the top here - to Reinfeldt and Borg and all the other right-wing scum politicians who put the private profits of their business friends before the welfare of ordinary people. I have nothing but hatred and contempt for the people who run Sweden right now.
00:48 November 7, 2011 by Uncommon Sense
Please don't tell Obama about this or he will be doing this in the USA!
05:05 November 7, 2011 by engagebrain
The invisible hand for making fast buck is alive and well.

Another triumph for the 1%.
06:35 November 7, 2011 by Prat
When Carema Care's bigwig owners (Ambea, Triton Partners & Kohlberg Kravis Roberts) tour their facilities, we need a feisty oldster who mumbles something, and when the suits lean in to hear... -- snap! Bite off an ear.

We're all on track to be warehoused by big business & Moderaterna.
07:04 November 7, 2011 by Douglas Garner
@Uncommon... we already went through this in the States. A lot of unscrupulous operators were put out of business, and now there is better oversight, usually through the regional health departments.

@StuartM... With all the government oversight going on in Sweden, this appears to be one area that has yet to adequately emerge! I know it is fun and easy to blame Rienfeldt and Borg, but it is even better to visit the old folks once in a while and notify Länstyrelsen of defeciencies:)
09:13 November 7, 2011 by StockholmSam
Typical private business behavior. This is why operations that are charged with maintaining the health and safety of human beings, animals and the environment should be run by governments. It is governments, after all, that are supposed to preserve the welfare of the society. Private businesses are supposed to preserve the welfare of the stockholders. Unfortunately, private business now runs the government. Revolution time.
11:00 November 7, 2011 by Brtahan
This is simply the harvest of capitalism, sell everything make them private and this is just the begining . Because when its done privatly they tend to save money as much as they can no matter what are the consequences, they dont give a sht ,if the person dies, as long as they have money ,extra bonuses ,paid semester ,new mercedes ,plus a big villa . These are just few examples . Corporates run the Government nowadays , before elecction they get funded and millions get pumped in to the party which gives better benefits to corporates for eq: less tax for the rich , which party is that? do your research and find out.
11:29 November 7, 2011 by old jack
Sweden's "private" care is still part of the state system. It doesn't exist as "private" care elsewhere. In a truly free system, you choose your own private doctor, not one the state regulates within your district, according to the wealth of your district. In a more free system, there are greater consequences for nasty behavior.

In this system, the state protects its workers more than it does we who pay them through our taxes. In a more free system, we control who we employee. We choose who to hire and fire. The middleman, whether it is state or insurance, only sees you as a cost unit. You, the individual, should always have the right to hire a doctor/care facility who cares about you! My life, my body. The state should keep out. I should have control over my own money to hire who I want.

The state is set to spend hundreds of millions of kroner on importing more people here. Why isn't this money being put toward elderly people who have paid with a lifetime of work? Calling all capitalists greedy is as useful as calling all socialists commis. These are not real ways to identify problems, system problems and cultural problems, that create these messes. The governemt probably gives its contracts to whomever works cheapest. Don't kid yourself that governments care about you. We're all cannon fodder and breeders to them.

People with unchecked power tend to abuse others, no matter what the system.
09:10 November 8, 2011 by salalah
Now they have changed the system; instead of giving bonuses based on results saved, they will give bonus for each surviving patient...
17:27 November 15, 2011 by zoroastrina
Is this capito-fascism, national-socialism, or is it Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, Goldman-Sachs, the US, Swiss, German and English banks, equity capital and hedge funds? And what is the difference between these bloodsucking corporate entities and capito-fascism?
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