Finding a Safe Nursing Home for your Loved One
Thursday, April 8, 2021
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The search for a nursing home for your loved ones is not always straightforward. Not only have conditions in nursing homes been deteriorating over the years - a problem that goes ignored by many - but the COVID-19 pandemic put a spotlight on the system, exposing even more problems in facilities throughout the country. Choosing the right nursing home could mean the difference between life and death for you or your loved one. Though Medicare has had in place a star rating system for nursing homes, a recent investigation done by the New York Times revealed that this system is unreliably broken, leaving those choosing where to send their loved ones to fend for themselves. Since the government has left you out to dry, here are some tips on how to choose a nursing home facility for you or your loved ones:
- Start early and don’t rush - if you or your loved one is in need of a nursing home facility, it’s much more convenient if you have already done all your research. It’s never too early to start looking into nursing homes, even if you do not expect to need one for years down the line. Request the contracts from the facilities you are interested in so you have time to read them carefully and ask questions about anything you do not understand.
- Ask your physician(s) for help - Not all nursing homes contain the same facilities, and your doctors are the best source for helping you assess what kinds of facilities will best cater to your needs. Not only do they know what kind of home will keep you happy and healthy, but they are often knowledgeable about the different nursing homes in the area that you will be choosing from.
- Visit the facility - The best way to know if a nursing home is right for you is to make a visit to the facility itself. While you are there, you should ask the staff many questions about the home to determine if it is best for you. Medicare has created a checklist for what to look for at any facility, but you should also create your own set of questions to ensure it is up to your standards. While visiting the nursing home, take note of the residents: How well are they groomed? Do they look happy? It is also important to observe the staff and their interactions with the residents.
Thorough research is the key to avoiding picking the wrong nursing home. With the boomer generation beginning to enter nursing home facilities as they age, incidents of mistreatment at these facilities are likely to increase. If you or a loved one has experienced nursing home neglect or abuse, please contact the Spellman Law Firm.
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