May 28, 2014
When the decision has been reached to put a loved one into a nursing home facility the arduous task of finding the right home begins. As a family where do you start to in deciding which home is suitable? And with the mounting allegations of abuse and neglect emerging from nursing homes all over the U.S., how do you know which facility you can trust? According to 2011 statistics there are over 1.3 million elders in nursing homes, a number which has stayed at around this amount since 2003. Reports show that 1 in 3 homes have been involved with allegations of abuse.
But what are the warning signs that potential residents and their families should be looking out for? And how much honest information can you really get from the homes that you are visiting?
The U.S. News and World Report website has compiled a list of five of what they believe are the most important factors to consider when choosing a nursing home for your loved one. By following these pointers you can begin to get a sense of where is right for you, your loved one and your family.
While there are plenty of homes that do provide excellent care, with well-trained staff and exceptional facilities, there are sadly also those that fall short of what is expected of them. Nursing home care is not financially cheap but families can also feel robbed emotionally if they come to see that the nursing home they have chosen has provided inadequate care and support.
So what are the warning signs that the news website has established as being the main points to look out for when searching for the right nursing home?
The site talks about whether a nursing home has a history of violations and how serious they are. Because nursing homes are governed by both public and private bodies it is possible and relatively straightforward to find this information online. Medicare.gov is one such site that provides an easy-to-use search engine so that you can compare nursing homes in specific areas. They also give each home a star rating. The type of violation however plays a huge part in determining the quality and standard of a nursing home because some violations can be more serious than others. Knowing the nature of each one and putting them into perspective can prove crucial. From this it is important to ask what a nursing home is doing to rectify the issues and violations so that they are not repeated.
Another red flag that can indicate that the nursing home you are looking at might not be the best one is if there is a high staff turnover. If a place is not right for an employee and they are being driven out or leaving then this can be a good indicator that things are not what they seem. The key thing is to look for how residents and staff communicate with each other and whether their rapport works. One good way to do this is by visiting the nursing home and having a chat with staff members. This will give you a good idea of the type of people that will be looking after your loved one.
If you see residents lacking independence, even in the smallest of matters, then this can be another reason how a nursing home is providing substandard care. It is important to give elderly people the freedom and ability to make decisions, as much as they can, about their environment. Again communication with staff is important in order to observe how they talk to the residents.
Ultimately the decision has to lie with you and how you feel in your gut about a nursing home. This might just be a sense or a feeling that you have that tells you whether a place is or isn’t right for your loved one. Check the whole building and talk to all staff members at all levels from caregivers to management.
For more information and advice about how to choose a nursing home then read here. Our site can provide you with support on how to spot the signs of abuse or neglect and can guide you in the right direction if you need legal advice. McIver Brown Nursing Home Law Firm sadly know all too well how it feels to have a loved one suffer from abuse or neglect. Let the team help you bring negligent nursing homes to justice.