Here are the clever approaches on how to select a nursing home for a family member.
What happens when family members can’t take care of their elders anymore? In the 19th century, some church groups tackled this problem by expanding the concept of almshouses.
Infirmaries were established for older people to receive high-quality care and medical attention. Statistics indicate that 16.5% of Americans were aged 65+ in 2019, and this population will reach 22% by 2050. Similarly, 50-year-olds make up one-third of our population.
Global health issues such as COVID-19 also rendered many families incapable of catering to the needs of the elderly. But you don’t want your old folks to end up somewhere unhappy, do you? So, how to find the right nursing home?
Nine tips for finding a reliable nursing home for your elders
There are 17,000+ nursing homes where old and terminally ill people have qualified workers tending to their needs. It may seem easy to find somewhere your family members can thrive happily during their last days with you.
Can’t you just search for the nearest nursing home and leave them there? No! You may be surprised to learn about the elder abuse suffered by aged folks in some long-term care centers.
A facility expelled a person with dementia in a Lyft without any money while others subjected residents to abuse. These concerns make some households reconsider their decision.
However, we ask you to read our suggestions as they may help you select the perfect nursing home for your aged folks. So, here’s what we’re proposing:
Ensure their credentials
Check the credentials of the workforce catering to the residents’ daily needs. Several nursing homes hire individuals who have pursued family nurse practitioner programs to improve their medical expertise.
These programs prepare nurses to contribute to better patient health outcomes. Educated health workers are capable of understanding the medical needs of your family members as well. So, invest in quality when you are considering caregiving options for your older relatives.
Get their schedule
What kind of social activities are available at a facility? Ensure mindless activities don’t control the schedule. It must be composed of interactive and educational activities to keep residents mentally and physically conscious. Choose a facility that treats residents with fairness regardless of their disabilities.
For example, Pilates classes should be available to people in a wheelchair as well. Also, residents should have the liberty to construct their separate schedules. That’s the kind of freedom they must enjoy.
Ask relevant questions
While visiting the facility, you should converse with the administrator. Even though you may discuss these matters with the manager via telephone, an in-person conversation helps you evaluate the nursing home’s atmosphere more effectively. So, what questions should you ask? Try these:
- What are the visiting hours?
- What services are included in the package?
- How do residents summon someone for help in an emergency?
The center’s proximity
Statistics indicate that one-fourth of people aged 65+ spend some temporary time in nursing homes at some point in their lives.
So, ensure the facility’s closer to your family member’s house so their friends can easily come to visit whenever they want.
According to a 2010 study, 60% of residents in nursing homes have infrequent visitors (probably because most of them lack a family). So, avoid becoming strangers to your loved ones by putting them inside an institution far away from home.
Check the numbers
Ask about the staff-to-resident ratio. Are there enough caregivers for all residents in that facility? It can help you realize whether health workers work overtime or arrive for double shifts. You wouldn’t allow exhausted individuals to cater to your loved one’s needs, would you?
When a facility is understaffed, its quality of service takes a sharp fall. Also, ensure workers stay there for some years because older people seldom respond well to frequent changes. They need familiar faces to tend to them.
Visit them often
Some nursing homes are notorious for mistreating residents and subjecting them to abuse and neglect. You can’t discover if the health workers at a specific facility are abusive after visiting it once. Hence, it’s necessary to see them often at various times to evaluate the staff’s competency.
A report suggests almost two-thirds of nursing home workers have committed at least one act of abuse or neglect. So, drop in at odd hours to ensure your lovely parents are comfortable in your absence.
The center’s atmosphere
Your elders deserve an institution with a welcoming atmosphere that contributes to the resident’s comfort. Focus on more than how the building looks from the outside or your single visit to common spaces.
Check the rooms where your family member will live and ensure it’s well-arranged for aged folks. Remember that older people require constant attention as well as immediate caregiving. Most of them demand care with ADL (activities of daily living), including moving, hygiene, medical needs, eating food, dressing, and undressing
Ask friends and family
Remember to discuss these matters with your friends and family since they may recommend a reliable facility.
Moreover, consult social workers to learn which long-term places they consider fit. We advise searching online for well-reputed nursing homes too.
Reviews on Google are based on residents’ experiences. This investigation will enable you to make a decision beneficial for yourself and that person. You shall eventually find the nicest place for them to live.
Read warning signs
Ensure health workers at a specific facility weren’t involved in elder abuse before. We have already discussed how most nursing home workers confess to harming residents.
COVID also exposed how these long-term care centers suffer from staffing and oversight issues that harm clients. So, read the signs before admitting your family member to a facility. For instance, the workforce should refer to residents by their given names instead of just “grandpa” or “grandma.”
Conclusion on how to select a nursing home
Statistics have revealed that 5% of adults aged 65+ currently reside in nursing homes. Most residents of these long-term care centers are aged 80+ with more than one chronic condition troubling them.
Around 1.4 million Americans today are living in different nursing homes. So, how do you ensure you admit your older family members to a reliable caregiving facility? We suggest checking the workforce employed there and observing how long aides/nurses stay there. Since the elderly respond poorly to change.
You should also ensure caregivers are attentive and engaged. Don’t leave your parents somewhere with an eerie and joyless atmosphere. Also, check online reviews for selecting the perfect institution.