Choosing to move a family member to a care home is a decision which no one makes easily. Often families will rally round and try and care for a relative themselves for a while, but this can be hard work and you may lack the skills to care for them effecitvely. It can be better to try and keep your relative at home as long as you can, perhaps with the help of Adult Social Care and a care package they may be able to provide. But sometimes, once a person loses their independence it can be better to move to a care home and receive the support they need.
There a three different kinds of care home. Residential, which is where the residents are unable to still care for themselves, but they have minimal nursing needs; a Nursing Home where trained nurses are on hand to nurse residents; and lastly a Dementia Care Home, where specialist dementia care can be given.
Gone are the days when care homes were “Gods waiting rooms”, most good homes will have an interesting and diverse programme of events for residents, designed to keep everyone entertained, stimulated and as active as can be. Good care homes are clean and smell clean, with good quality furniture and caring staff. Always ask around for personal recommendations and visit a couple of times, perhaps at different times of the day to get a feel for the place.
The Care Quality Commission inspect care homes on a regular basis and you can find their ratings and reports on their website, this may help you to find a suitable care home in your area.
Choosing the right care home
- Get personal recommendations
- Check out the Care Quality Commission inspection reports
- Visit several times to see if it fits the bill
- Trust your instincts
- Is it clean and does it smell clean?
- Are the staff properly qualified, helpful and attentive?
- What activities are in place for the residents?
I’ve found an interesting article in Live Magazine about choosing the right care home, with some useful advice about the rights of care home residents. If you have any concerns about your care, or the care of a relative, you should first raise this with the home itself, although not all problems can be remedied in this way, you may need to contact the Care Quality Commission or take advice from a specialist law firm like Pryers Solicitors.
Choosing the right care home can be tricky, you may have to contribute a lot of money to pay for your care, and you are entitled to receive the high quality care you or your relative requires. If your chosen care home can’t or wont meet your needs, then you should consider your options, either moving to a different care home, or fighting for the treatment you deserve in your existing care home.
Do your research, trust your instincts and choose well. It’s never an easy decision, but one most of us will face at some time in our lives.
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