It’s estimated that out of all the people turning 65 today, 52% will need some form of long term care in their lifetimes. Deciding to put your loved one into a nursing facility is always hard — and finding the perfect long term care or rehab facilities can be even harder.
For those who have loved ones struggling with serious medical conditions such as Alzheimer’s, dementia, or another disability that needs daily care, skilled nursing facilities are going to be your best option. On the other hand, seniors who could benefit from rehabilitation could also be considered for long term care options that offer specialized rehab facilities. To help make finding the best facility a bit easier, here are four tips you should keep in mind.
1. Determine What Your Loved One Needs
Before you choose which long term or rehab facilities you want to visit, you first need to determine the level of care that your loved one needs. A skilled nursing facility, for example, is for those who require specialized care on a daily basis or have behavioral issues that make them better suited for a higher care level. Additionally, memory care is designed for those suffering from Alzheimer’s or dementia. If you’re unsure what level of care your loved one needs, speak with their doctor about having an assessment conducted.
2. Locate Suitable Facilities
Once you have their level of care in mind, you can begin looking for long term care or rehab facilities. It’s also worth keeping in mind the location where your loved one would want to be. Would they prefer an urban location or one further out in the suburbs? Feel free to ask your doctors or even friends and family for potential recommendations. You can also look online for lists of facilities in your area. Be sure to read the reviews and note what kinds of services they provide. This will help give you a better idea as to the care they can provide for your loved one.
3. Visit the Facilities
Once you have a couple of prospective locations in mind, call the facilities and schedule a tour date. This will give you the opportunity to go and meet the other residents and staff, as well as inspect the building and accommodations. It’s advised that you stop by during the week to speak with administrators, while also considering stopping by on a weekend to see how well the building runs when the administrators aren’t there. During your visits, you should look at overall cleanliness and how current residents and employees act. Assess whether the building seems inviting, as opposed to cold and hospital-like. If you can, observe some of the activities hosted for residents to get an idea of the types of things your loved one can participate in while there.
4. Ask Questions
Lastly, be sure to always ask these key questions before you leave.
- Is this facility capable of providing the level of care needed?
- Are there any community fees associated with move-in? If there are, is they refundable if your loved one ends up not staying?
- What types of activities are provided that your loved one can participate in?
- Are there enough caregivers on staff to provide for residents? What is the ratio?
- What happens if your loved one ends up requiring a higher level of care?
- How often does the doctor visit?
- Is there a special unit for memory care?
If you can, ask current residents how they enjoy living there. You might also want to speak with visiting family members to hear their experiences.
Long term care and rehab facilities are valuable resources that families need to know about. While it’s never an easy decision to put your loved one in skilled care, finding the right facility for them can improve their quality of life exponentially. With the above tips in mind, you can find the perfect place for your loved one to call home.