For many families, having a loved one going into an elderly care facility can be a really tough decision. For a lot of older people, the perceived loss of independence and need to be looked after can be quite a shocking reality to confront.
At the same time, while some seniors can be quite independent and even live on their own (in their own home), the fact is that even if they aren’t suffering from chronic conditions or any major health issues, the aging process will catch up with them eventually, and loved ones may notice that they are starting to become more forgetful and prone to accidents, or unable to cook meals or even do simple tasks independently.
That’s why it’s good to know what to consider when choosing an elderly care facility.
Choosing Your Facility: Demystifying the Process
This is a tough decision for many families to make. While most older people are quite happy living in their own homes, they can easily fall into confusion and need assistance with activities that might not be necessary if they were independent.
On the other hand, there are a lot of care options out there such as senior care facilities that can provide an environment where seniors can live comfortably while also receiving round-the-clock support in a dignified and subtle way.
With so many choices to choose from, it can be hard to determine which one is the perfect one for you and you’re senior loved one.
Below are some pointers to help you and your loved one pick the best care facility for them.
This is one of the most important factors that you should consider when choosing a care facility for your elderly loved one.
Staff in senior care facilities come in various degrees of professionalism and qualification, so it’s vital to do your research to ensure that the staff is well trained, knowledgeable about dealing with elderly patients, and well-versed not just on how to provide standard care but also how to deal with any special concerns or emergencies that often arise with elderly patients.
Ask for the specifics of their training; for example, have the administrative staff undertaken RCFE administrator training, are the on-site nursing staff trained RNs or nurse practitioners who specialize in elderly care?
Asking these questions will also help you to build up a picture of how professional the facility is.
A Good Location
If you are choosing which senior care facility to place your loved one in, you should look for a sustainable and safe facility that is centrally located.
Finding a senior care facility located close to home will make it easier for you to visit regularly and also call on the facility if necessary.
A good location will also make it easy for other family members and friends to visit, making it a more family-oriented environment for your loved ones.
The Right Amount of Care Required
If your loved one is going to need round-the-clock care, you should make sure that the facility has a sufficient number of qualified staff on hand to ensure round-the-clock support.
You should also check to see if the facility offers the right type of care for your loved one. For example, if your loved one is not suffering from any chronic conditions but will still need constant supervision and care, then you should look for a facility that offers scheduled activities, medication observation, and other forms of support.
Such a facility would be more appropriate than one that only focuses on round-the-clock medical care.
Meet with the Executive Director
Elders have specific preferences when it comes to living arrangements, so it’s important to make sure that the facility you choose has a good line of communication with both the senior and family members.
You should also consider speaking with an executive director of the facility in order to get a good idea of how they will deal with issues such as billing and other financial considerations.
While it’s important to find a senior care facility that provides good services, it’s also important that their facilities are kept in a clean and hygienic manner. This is especially true for older adults who are prone to germs and infections.
When looking around care facilities, ask your guides to show you around their building and inspect the bathrooms, kitchen areas, and laundry room. All facilities should be clean, hygienic, and free of germs.
Ability to Adjust Care Requirements
As mentioned above, some seniors may not be suffering from any chronic conditions or require constant care and attention.
However, even if your loved one doesn’t need round-the-clock care, you still want to make sure that the facility has a plan to deal with any unforeseen circumstances.
For example, is their nursing staff trained to adjust care requirements to deal with things such as patients who are transitioning from a hospital stay back into their facility? Can they handle other things like budgeting and scheduling issues?
Being able to answer these questions will show you how proactive the care facilities are in handling problems that may arise.
Flexibility to Assess Care Needs
Depending on your loved one’s current needs, you may not be able to find the perfect care facility that can handle all of their needs.
For example, if your loved one is recovering from a serious illness and no longer needs to have round-the-clock care, then you may want to look for a facility that can provide alternative care options, such as assisted bathing and meal preparation.
These additional types of care can easily be adjusted should your loved one start needing more assistance in the future.
Taking the Next Steps
Once you have narrowed down your options based on the above pointers, it’s time to go and visit the facilities. This will be a great way to get a “feel” of the place, so to speak.
You can also ask for referrals from friends and relatives who have used care facilities for themselves or their family members. They will be able to give you honest feedback about their experience with different care providers.
The key thing is to not rush your decision. You will be entrusting your elderly loved one to the care and supervision of a facility for however long you may need it, so it’s important to make the right choice for their future.
After finding the right facility to take care of your elderly loved one, all that’s left is to ease them into their new home and allow them to enjoy their golden years as they should.
If you are caring for an elderly family member, it is natural to feel some guilt if you are not able to perform the duties that they need. If a family member is in need of care and assistance and you have a full-time job, it’s only natural to feel responsible.
It’s important to remember that these care facilities are designed for the elderly and that they are not a burden. They are a necessary aid and assistance for your elderly family member.
There will be times when you feel guilty, but remember that if you were not able to be there, your elderly loved one would still need to be looked after by somebody. It’s necessary in order to continue living with dignity and decency in the comfort of their own home.
Even if you don’t have anywhere else to turn, elder care facilities are always available. If you are searching for care for an elderly loved one, someone to help them get out of the house, and to be there for your family member when you cannot be, then this is the perfect solution.
When it comes to getting in touch with a facility, there are many different avenues that you can take. You can look around online; there are plenty of websites out there that offer great assistance to those looking for elder care facilities.