Advocating for quality care in various settings (at the doctor’s office, in a hospital, during family gatherings, etc.) was the focus of this week’s #ElderCareChat conversation. One of the questions the group explored was how to ensure quality care for a loved one in a senior care facility like assisted living. Before you become an advocate in that setting though, how do you find a quality community?
Consider these tips:
- Find a community with a good reputation. Don’t know anyone who lives in the assisted living home you’re considering? Talk to caregivers who attend local support groups (doctors and hospitals should have these lists).
- Find a community with a welcoming atmosphere. A place where the staff consistently greets you with a warm smile and remembers your name? That’s the kind of environment you want for your loved one.
- Find a community that provides ongoing training options for staff. Care standards are generally higher when the staff are well-equipped and educated on how best to meet residents’ needs.
- Find a community that is up-front about all costs. You pay more than room and board in assisted living. If the provider talks about extra charges and “incidentals” at the outset, or at least notifies you about the possibilities of rate increases and added expenses, it’s a good sign.
- Find a community that is active. Sometimes, the residents are active outside of the formally scheduled activities, so don’t just go by how many items are on the calendar. However, a well-rounded calendar is certainly a positive thing.