If you have an elderly loved one who can no longer safely care for himself/herself, it may be time to consider nursing home care. Making the decision that nursing home care is necessary is rarely easy. Once the decision has been made, however, the task of finding the right facility takes precedence. To help you make an informed decision, the Long Island elder law attorneys at Eghrari Wealth Training Firm discuss how to choose the right nursing home for your loved one.
Is Nursing Home Care Necessary?
Few people want to be moved to a nursing home. On the contrary, most older people prefer to live out their days in their own home or in the home of a relative. Consequently, the number of unpaid family caregivers continues to grow each year in the United States. For a caregiver, it can be difficult to admit that the type of care a loved one needs can only be provided by a long-term care facility. Making the decision to move a loved one to a nursing home is a highly personal decision; however, if your loved one requires around the clock care or you have concerns about his/her safety when someone is not there, it may be time to consider a nursing home.
Concerns about Elder Abuse and Neglect
Along with feeling guilty for moving a loved one to a nursing home, family members often worry about elder abuse and neglect. Sadly, those concerns are valid. Elder abuse and neglect do occur at an alarming rate; however, abuse and neglect can occur in a family care setting as well as a long-term care facility. The best way to keep your loved one safe from elder abuse and neglect is to take your time when it comes time to choose a nursing home. In addition, be sure to remain vigilant after your loved one has moved to the facility. Pop in unannounced from time to time to make sure your loved one is safe and is receiving the proper care.
Suggestions to Help You Choose the Right Nursing Home
They key to choosing the right nursing home for your loved one is to research facilities and ask the right questions. A good place to start your search is the New York State Department of Health website. There, you will find a list of licensed nursing home facilities throughout the State of New York. Another excellent resource is the New York State Long Term Care Ombudsman Program. The ombudsman program is tasked with helping older New Yorkers by providing them with resources and investigating complaints about facilities or care professionals. Once you have a list of nursing homes that you feel have a good reputation, prepare a list of questions to ask when you meet with administrators. Some things to consider asking include:
- What is your patient to staff ratio?
- Do you have a licensed physician on the premises at all times?
- Can you provide me with a sample menu?
- What activities do residents engage in and how often?
- How do you handle resident or family complaints?
- Do you provide transportation for residents?
If your loved one has specific needs, be sure to ask about those as well. Finally, while you should schedule an introductory meeting with the administrators at each potential nursing home, make a point of showing up when they are not expecting you as well to see what your impression is of the facility when the staff is off guard. If possible, speak to current residents and/or staff as well before making your decision.
Contact Long Island Elder Law Attorneys
For more information, please join us for an upcoming FREE seminar. If you have additional questions or concerns about how to choose the right nursing home for your loved one, contact the Long Island elder law attorneys at Eghrari Wealth Training Firm by calling us at 631-265-0599 to schedule your appointment.
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