You’re planning on putting your loved one into a nursing home. It’s a decision that most kids don’t want to make for their parents. Sometimes, the level of care that a parent needs as they age is too much for a child, with a job and other responsibilities, to manage on their own.
But when you’re trying to find a nursing home, there’s a lot that goes into the process.
There are 15,000+ nursing homes, and not all of them are a good fit for a family member or yourself.
When trying to find that perfect fit for your family, these few tips can help:
1. Rely on Professional Services to Help
Your initial search can be made much easier with the use of professional services. You can do a lot of leg work yourself, but you can also choose to skip over a lot of the hassle and ask for recommendations from:
- Social service agencies
- Local agencies for the aging community
- Doctors, friends, neighbors
- Hospital discharge planners and/or social workers
These points of contact will be able to help you find a reliable nursing home.
2. Avoid Large-Scale Nursing Home Chains
Large-scale nursing home chains may offer cheaper prices or fancy facilities, but they also have 36% higher rates of deficiency when meeting Medicare and Medicaid standards. These same nursing homes had a 41% higher rate of serious deficiencies.
Large facilities also have higher rates of bedsores.
Understaffing is the largest contributor to bedsores and deficiency, and this understaffing is what you need to look for in a nursing home. If the ratio of staff to residents is too low, your loved one or yourself will not receive the care and dedication needed. If you suspect any negligence or abuse, consult an elder abuse attorney
3. Leverage the Medicare.gov Resource
Medicare.gov has an invaluable comparison tool, completely free, that offers a full database of nursing home information. You’ll be able to view a lot of information about local nursing homes, including:
- Customer reviews
It’s a research tool that also offers overall ratings for nursing homes, facilities, staff ratings, quality measures and even health inspection results that you can view. The best part is that the government tool is updated often and is currently undergoing a new update that will make it even more powerful of an asset.
Medicaid does offer assistance with paying for nursing home care, but not all nursing homes will accept Medicaid.
4. Have You Considered Assisted Living?
Assisted living centers are often a great fit because they cost less and offer more freedom. When living in an assisted living center, the resident is able to have the care and help they need.
Perhaps the resident only needs help getting into bed or getting dressed.
Of course, an assisted living center is not as well equipped to handle medical care for all patients. States regulate assisted living centers, as the federal government is in charge of nursing home facilities.
Assisted living can also help with chores, laundry and housekeeping.
There are also a lot of planner activities at these assisted living centers that are more extensive than at a nursing home.