Once you have made the decision to move yourself or a relative into a care home, it is important that you find the right care home for you or the other person.
Often a decision to move into a care home is because it has been advised by family, friends, a doctor or you have chosen to make the move. This may be due to poor health, a crisis, a fall or the fact that the person can no longer look after themselves sufficiently.
Research is key - what to look for in a care home.
Find out about homes in your chosen area, research on the internet for testimonials and what people are saying about their services. Ask the home to send you a brochure and arrange a visit to homes that you feel comfortable with.
When visiting a care home, ask lots of questions, especially about how the home can meet yours or your relatives specific needs. Speak to people who are in the home and ask to speak to relatives who have people staying in the home as this will give you a good idea of what the home is really like to live there.
Ask to visit all areas of the home including bedrooms, kitchens and living areas.
We have put together a list of questions that you may want to ask:
- What do your fees include, will there be any extras to pay for?
- Do you have a contract directly with the home or will it be with local authorities?
- You need security, so what will the notice period be if any party would like to terminate the contract.
- Do they offer a trial period; so that if you are not happy with the accomodation or they can not provide the care required?
- If the home was suddenly closed or was sold to another party, what would be the contingency plan to ensure that you are a priority?
- What is the complaints procedure and how do they handle them?
- If the resident became ill or needed extra care, would the home be able to provide it or would they have to move to a new residence?
- What is there smoking policy?
- Closely watch the behaviour of staff with the residents, are they run off their feet or are they attentive to individual residents.
- What social activities do they carry out with residents, is there a library or shops
- How do meals work, are they offered a choice of food, is there set times to eat and do they take into consideration special diets.
- Work with your instincts, feel the atmosphere, are visits timed or are they made to feel welcome at any time.
- Check to see if there is a garden or grounds for residents to use.
- Is there a set bed time and get up time?
- Do the residents keep their own GP and manage their own medication?
Moving into a care home is a very important decision and no question or consideration can be taken lightly.