About 70% of people over 65 need long-term care worldwide. This is not unusual since aging slows down the body, and living alone becomes tremendously difficult. Similarly, the elderly will need assistance in doing basic chores and managing their health and require help in restructuring their life again. Therefore, over 800,000 people are in nursing homes in the United States alone.
However, despite these large numbers, not every nursing home has the facilities to look after the aging population, with some resorting to abuse, neglect, and general misconduct of the tenants. In 2020 WHO found that over 60% of nursing home staff members confessed to committing abuse or neglect. So, before you help a loved one or an elder resident transition into their new accommodations, you must thoroughly check out the establishment. This saves you a lifetime of regret and ensures the older person under your care is comfortable, safe, and peacefully enjoying their retired life.
Here are some factors which you need to gauge carefully:
- Handling Of Residents
On the surface, every nursing home will guarantee you top-notch care, but behind the scenes, they may hide another story. Even if the establishment convinces you to admit an older person into their facility, ensure you keep tabs on their health. Anytime you notice that the elderly you were caring for has inexplicable injuries, shows signs of agitation, or looks weak and malnourished, you shouldn’t hesitate to contact an attorney. Don’t allow these signs and symptoms to go past you and seek legal consultation.
By filing for a nursing home lawsuit, you can ensure that the staff is held accountable, their operations get shut down, and the older person you are responsible for gets compensated. Above all, you prevent these fraudulent accommodations from further harming other residents. Admitting a senior person to a facility doesn’t mean your responsibility is over. Instead, it would help if you met them more frequently, asked questions, consistently checked on them, and gave them different means of contacting you when necessary.
- The Services Offered
An older person needs more than a room in the nursing home to feel welcomed. They need people close to their age, access to the tv, and internet, get their meals on time, and have space to relax. Therefore, you should take the time to learn about the services your choice of nursing home offers. You can look into signing up for a tour and begin your evaluation. Take note of the establishment’s cleanliness, including the building’s maintenance.
If the home looks old, has mold, cracks, and has a bad smell, this may not be the best facility, no matter how cost-effective. Ask how the staff manages inpatient and outpatient residents, what medications are available, what doctors are on board, how much free land they have, and what activities they offer senior residents—for instance, tai chi, counseling, and equine therapy.
You may also want to check out the menu and inquire about the diet plans, how the facility manages allergies, how nutritious the meals are, and the snacks available. Unless you’re sure the place is well kept, has adequately trained staff, and is equipped to handle all sorts of emergencies, don’t consider the institute.
- Ensure The Older Person Has All Necessities
A nursing home will provide necessities, but you must ensure the resident has all their personal belongings, whether for sentimental purposes or practical use. You have to ensure all their clothing and shoes go with them. If the older person you care for takes a particular medication, have the prescription at hand and inform the facility about these medicines. Don’t discount the joy a well-decorated and personalized space brings.
Help the older patient decorate their room, put up pictures, have items to carry out their hobbies like knitting, and have specialized devices like a walking aid, hearing device, glasses, and medical equipment for their illness. If the nursing home prevents you from bringing these possessions, that is a red flag. If you also see an item missing after the resident moves in, don’t let the issue go until the facility retrieves it for you.
While nursing homes may have limits on electronic gadgets, ensure you know the policies and if they comply with state regulations. These accommodations cannot cut off an older resident from contacting loved ones.
- Funding The Move
Financing can be a source of concern for you. But there are many resources in place to help pay for these facilities. While insurance can help, each company has its terms and conditions and limitations. So, before you depend on them, ensure you’re well aware that the person you care for is on the adequate policy. High-end nursing homes are expensive. Insurances like Medicare can pay for some resources but may stop after some time. Medicaid is another plausible option, but this insurance is only applicable if the older person is below the poverty line.
So, reach out to friends and family if they can pitch in to make this move possible, inquire with the nursing home if they have a flexible payment plan and if the older adult has enough to shift to their new home. Go for nursing homes that can fit the set budget. Consistently forcing an older person to relocate because of a lack of funds can take a mental and emotional toll on them. So, ensure the facility you choose is feasible, affordable for the long term, and easy to keep up with.
Moving to a nursing home is a fundamental shift for many older people. The care and warmth they may find in these facilities can be a source of comfort for them as they continue aging gracefully. However, you can’t pick the first establishment you see. It would help if you worked to find the most suitable home and sign up for the older person. To begin with, ensure the institute is not hiding a sinister secret in the form of elderly abuse. If you notice that the place you picked is actively harming your older person, utilize the law to hold them accountable.
You may want to know about the services offered and how well thought out they are. Make sure you pack every necessary item the older person needs to settle in. Finally, never go off budget. You wouldn’t want to end up in a financially distressing situation. So, choose good accommodations with a reasonable cost and signup for the older person you’re caring for.