If your loved one needs more care than you can give, this is a difficult time – especially if Alzheimer’s or dementia is involved. It may be time to find a good assisted living or nursing facility.
The places to start your research are your local Alzheimer’s Resource Center, Area Agency on Aging, and Alzheimer’s Association. And the time to start is before you need help…not under the pressure of a crisis situation.
Take notes when you visit, so you can compare who said what, at which place. Bring someone with you who can be objective. Visit at different times of the day.
Is the place pleasant and inviting? Does staff interact with the patients? Are they responsive to patients’ needs? Is the facility spotless (inside and out)? Look. Listen. Touch. And smell. Are there secure outdoor areas for the residents? Do they have an open-door policy? Ask to see the most recent state report on the center. And make certain any deficiencies have been corrected.
You’d ask for references when hiring a contractor, right? So do the same here- get contact information for at least three families with residents at the facility. (And call them!) In addition, ask around the community.
Find a center nearby; you don’t want to travel an hour or two – especially in case of emergency.
If your loved one has Alzheimer’s, there may be waiting lists at the better centers. Put your name down. If you’re not ready when they call, don’t worry – they’ll keep your name on the list.
Perhaps the most important thing you can do at this uncertain time, though, is to get assistance from people who know the ropes.
At The Law Offices of Alice Reiter Feld & Associates, we’ve been climbing these ropes with South Florida families for 33 years. And we’ve helped thousands of them.
We practice Elder Law – and only Elder Law. Whether it’s navigating the Elder Care maze for a loved one with Alzheimer’s, or securing their (or your) future with estate planning, wills, trusts, powers of attorney, long-term care planning, or assistance with Medicaid or the VA – we can help.
And we’re only a phone call away.
How Do I Choose The Right Assisted Living Facility Or Nursing Home For My Loved One?