Watching those we love grow older can be difficult when it becomes clear that their safety is at risk when unsupervised. At that point, it may become necessary for many to consider nursing home care. But how does the average person decide on just the right place for their elderly loved one? Experts offer several tips.
One consideration many must consider is whether or not the nursing home has Medicaid or Medicare certification. Nursing homes can be quite expensive, and getting some help with the monthly payment is critical for many Americans.
Consider the Food
Nursing homes generally work to provide nutritious meals, while some sacrifice palatability and/or visual appeal. This can be particularly problematic for our loved ones who are reluctant eaters. When checking out nursing home options, be sure to visit the dining room a few times to get a sense of the meals that will be provided.
Are Residents Treated with Dignity?
When visiting a home, listen up. Are residents addressed by name? Do you hear residents who seem to be in distress, or who are calling out for help? If so, how is the staff responding? Impatient or sharp-tongued staff members are a big warning sign! And by the way—staff who are rude to one another are likely more so with residents when no one’s looking!
Take a Sniff
Yes, funky scents will be present in even very good nursing homes. That’s because many residents have issues with bladders and/or bowels, while others take medications that create a gassy stomach. But a reeking odor of urine may be an indication that there is neglect, whether in caring for patient needs or in cleaning the premises.
What are the Routines for Residents
Have residents been tucked away in their rooms most of the time, or left in front of a television in a common room? Or are there opportunities for games, activities, and entertainment? A nursing home should be providing a variety of quality activities on a regular basis. Otherwise, it’s not going to be a good, healthy environment.
Consider Medical Issues
While bruising is common as we age, some bruises may seem suspicious. Handprint shaped marks could be a sign of an abusive interaction. Another issue to consider is bedsores. While these, too, may be unavoidable for the sickest and frail residents, those who are capable of getting up and about should be doing so. For those who are confined to bed, you should expect them to be rotated on a regular basis, and those rotations should be charted.
If Something Goes Wrong
Once you’ve made a selection, it is important to make regular, unscheduled visits to check on your loved one. Listen to concerns and pay attention to changes in behavior. If there are problems, go to the administration with your concerns. If you suspect nursing home abuse or neglect, you may need the assistance of aggressive attorneys who are familiar with the industry. At Dan Pruitt Injury Law Firm, we are experienced in detecting these issues and will fight for justice. Contact us in Greenville for a free, confidential consultation today.
Dan Pruitt is a Personal Injury Attorney who practices in Greenville, SC. He graduated from University of Georgia, and has been practicing law for 25 years. Dan Pruitt believes in fighting for the injured. Learn more about his experience by clicking here.