When It’s Time for a Nursing Home
When you realize that an elderly family member is no longer safe living on his or her own, you are faced with a decision that has far-reaching repercussions. How do you know if the environment you are searching for is a supportive one? Will your loved one be safe? What do you need to know about elder abuse in order to avoid such a nightmare?
Step One – Do Your Homework
Whether you are looking for a nursing home in Long Beach or anywhere else, the first thing to do is read reviews from residents and their family members. While it may seem simplistic, there really is a value in doing a Google search for the “best” nursing home in your local area. Yelp, U.S. News, and other measuring organizations consider many factors in reviewing and rating these homes, including:
- Staff-to-patient ratio
- Health inspections
- Quality of life reports
- Medical care quality as well as quantity
- Rehabilitative treatment records
Reading the reviews by current patients and family members is also a way to get insight into what life in the home is like when no one is visiting, an important fact.
Step Two – Understand the Risks
Why does it matter so much what other people have to say about a nursing home facility? The answer is simple: The quality of care, likelihood of abuse, and responsiveness of the medical team can be the reason that your loved one’s days are lengthened…or shortened. And while the reviews online may be a good place to start, they are certainly not the only way to evaluate a facility. Nothing beats visiting a nursing home to see the condition of the building as well as the actual residents, watch the healthcare professionals interact with patients, and find out what kind of background investigations the home does on staff. Also, see if you can find out the staff turnover rate.
There are horror stories in the news all the time about elder care abuse at the hands of those who have been entrusted with their care. Before you sign the papers for your beloved elder, be sure you understand exactly what you are committing to and what the costs will be. Also, be sure you know what options you have if you or your loved one is unhappy with the treatment. And be prepared to, if needed, vigorously defend your loved one with the help of an elder law specialist. Talk to an advocate at Siegel Law at 562-645-4145 before you decide what the right place for your elder is.