Moving your loved one into a nursing home is often a decision based on necessity. You worry that your loved one could be vulnerable without around-the-clock medical support, and you still have your own family to care for it or job to work.
A nursing home should help protect your loved one from issues like falls and other known risks associated with aging, like mixing up or forgetting medications. Unfortunately, the support your loved one receives in a nursing home may not protect them from injury.
Some people develop medical issues because of negligence staff. Others are actively hurt by individuals who engage in physical abuse or financial abuse of residents. How can you pick a nursing home that will properly support your vulnerable loved one?
Look at online reports
There are numerous online resources to help you find nursing homes. Locating nearby nursing homes and then looking up what people say about them online can be an excellent starting point for your search. You may be able to narrow your options down to a shortlist and then arrange to visit each of the facilities.
Look at the rooms and the residents
If possible, visiting when staff members don’t know you will come is the best way to see what life is like in a nursing home on any given day. If you visit and notice that residents are unkempt, that their call lights go unresponded to or that rooms in the facility are quite cluttered and dirty, those could be warning signs of negligent care and understaffing.
Talk to residents and staff if possible
Few people will give you as good of an idea about what occurs in a nursing home as the people who already live there or the people who work there. Talking to residents or to family members who have someone staying there can give you an idea of what others have experienced that that facility.
The attitudes and behaviors of staff members could also be very telling. Someone angry about their job or to stressed to talk to you could be a red flag that the staff there don’t have the time or energy to really support your loved one.
Remember not to let the facility rest on its laurels
It is so important that can you continue to watch for signs of abuse or neglect when your loved one moves to a nursing home. A recent new hire or a change in company policy might be all it takes to diminish the quality of care that they receive.