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How to choose a nursing home

Published on December 15th, 2008

Elise Degrass has written a guest post for our blog.   We appreciate her contribution and look forward to many other posts in the future.

How to Make Sure Your Parents Are Being Treated Right at Their Nursing Home

It can be difficult to accept that one’s parents need assisted living care in order to properly get through the day. While enrolling a parent in a nursing home may be a necessary step in the process, it’s also important to ensure that he or she is receiving proper care.
Selecting the proper care institution and setting up the right structure for care will ensure that the best possible living conditions for one’s parent(s) in a nursing home.

The first step to ensure proper Nursing Home treatment is to choose the right health care provider in the first place. By taking time to do background research on the Nursing Homes in your area, you can save a lot of time in the future. Services such as Consumer Reports provide information about what to expect from various nursing home providers. Unlike hospitals, nursing homes vary widely in terms of their ability to provide basic services, so always inquire whether a given care center can provide the services that your parents need. For many people, Nursing Home costs can be prohibitively expensive, so look for an institution that is covered by Medicare
to help alleviate the cost burden. You should always visit a care center and request the latest state inspection (Form 2567) to see an objective review of the care center.

After taking time to select what seems to be the best possible institution, there are several steps you can take to ensure that quality of care is up to standards. The most direct way of checking in
on care standards is through regular visits at non-standard times –that way you can review the care standards at various times during the day, and you can keep an eye out for any necessary improvements (in terms of care, cleanliness or scheduling.) Always ask you parent(s) directly about the nature of the care, and discuss any possible issues with management in case any issues arise; in fact, scheduling regular meetings with supervisors can provide a constant feedback look to ensure proper care.

Selecting a Nursing Home close to your work or home will make it easier to visit more regularly. In addition to your direct visits, have various members of your family regularly check up on your
parent(s), as well as asking important questions in case issues arise. Always have a contingency plan in case the care falls below standards, so that you can move to an alternative care center. If your parent has serious medical conditions, it is important to take them to regular visits with their family physician so that they can be monitored for progress; if they are not getting their medications regularly or their diet is not sufficient to provide the nutrients they need, a doctor
should be able to provide you with feedback that you can relay to the Nursing Home. By selecting a nursing home that is professionally management with attentive, registered nurses and medical staff, you can provide the best possible environment for long-term care.

This post was submitted by Elise Degrass, a freelance writer primarily
writing about cell phones .

Joe Pioletti
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