While many assisted living facilities may seem alike, a few differences are worth noting. For example, some are smaller, while others are more socially active.
Inquire about the staff-to-resident ratio, and ask whether you can speak with healthcare professionals and residents to get a more candid insight into life at each facility.
Taking a formal tour with a community representative is essential. It’s also a good idea to visit the facility unannounced and speak with staff members (health care professionals, housekeeping, barber, etc.) and residents to get a less varnished insight into what life will be like there.
Be sure to ask about safety features, meal options, and activities, as well as what amenities are included in the cost of a residential unit. Make a list of questions you have, and write down answers, as this will help you when comparing facilities. If you’re observing the staff, notice how friendly they are and whether they interact with the residents in a way that makes them feel comfortable. Also, ask about any complaints and how the staff members have handled them. This will show you how they handle conflict, which is essential when dealing with loved ones. Inquire about staff turnover rates, as high numbers can be a red flag.
Schedule a Visit
When touring facilities, be observant. Pay attention to how clean the place is, whether there are enough activities for your loved one, and whether staff members interact warmly with current residents. Ask about the facility’s suggestions, complaint and grievance procedures, and resident and family councils. You also want to determine how long employees have worked at the facility and their shifts.
Be sure to visit during meal times and at the time of day your loved one prefers. Ask about upcoming events and look at the activity calendar to see if there are activities that interest your loved one. If they are religious, find out if they offer worship services onsite or transport to nearby churches, temples, and mosques. It’s essential to be prepared for the financial cost of assisted living, Bradenton, Florida. Be sure to discuss fees and costs with any providers you consider, as prices may increase over time, and changes in your lovone’se’s condition may require additional care and services.
Ask for References
You should seek referrals from various sources, including your loved one’s doctor, hospital discharge planner, friends and family members with senior living experience, and trusted professionals in the aged care industry. Requesting references from current or past residents and their families is essential to gain firsthand insights into the level of care, environment, and social community your loved one will enjoy.
When meeting with potential facilities, please pay close attention to the qualifications and expertise of staff members and their ratios compared to the number of residents served. A high professionalism, friendliness, and attentiveness are crucial in helping your loved one feel comfortable and safe.
Evaluatefacility’s social and recreational activities, dining options, and dietary accommodations during your visit. Touring the facility and reviewing admissions contracts and residence rules is also essential. After thorough research and facility visits, trust your instincts to make the right decision for your loved one.
Make a Decision
The choice of an assisted living residence can be a difficult one. When researching options, thoroughly evaluate each residence and pay particular attention to the quality of staff members (including those not part of the tour group). Observe how they interact with residents and whether or not they show compassion and concern for older adults.
You should also carefully review contracts to avoid unexpected fees and deposits and find out about provisions for discharging or evicting a resident and whether the facility accepts long-term care insurance. Also, consider if your loved one could qualify for Medicaid, the federal/state health care program for low incomes and limited assets.
Although your aging parent may not be enthusiastic about moving to assisted living, she will probably adjust much more quickly than you might expect. If she expresses concerns, take them seriously and work through them together. And arrange for her to spend a short stay in the community to experience life there.