Having to place an elderly loved one into a nursing home is a daunting task. The stories abound about poor care and neglect in these health care facilities, which makes the task even more difficult when choosing where to put your loved one.

Here are some of the things you can and should do when searching for a facility:

-Visit several care homes; don’t ever rely on the first visit.

-Visit facilities at odd times, such as overnight; this may be difficult, but be persistent. 

-Make visits on different days; weekends are a good time.

-Make sure that the facility is well-staffed.

One of the things to be wary of is a nursing home with fewer employees than is necessary. Check to make sure that the patient to staff ration is adequate, especially during the overnight hours.

Check to ensure that bed linens are changed often so that your loved one doesn’t lie in their own waste. This is more common than you may think. Also, if the patient is bed-bound, staff should be moving them and changing their position in the bed so that bed sores don’t form.

When the staffing is inadequate, patients do not get fed properly; they may not receive medications on time, and they may receive the wrong medications.

If you have issues with the nursing home, make it known to the manager of the facility. Keep notes about everything that happens and doesn’t happen during the stay.

All nursing homes are not created equal; even in the best of circumstances, you have to be vigilant in order for your loved one to receive the best care. And while everything may look bright and shiny, things are not always as they seem. The family must be very involved to ensure that your loved one receives the care they need. And even then, it can be a tough battle.

If you have questions or issues with a nursing home or rehabilitation facility, contact one of our attorneys. Visit our Online Legal Directory to find and attorney in your area.

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