Finding qualified care for your loved one can be challenging.  You will be entrusting his or her care with complete strangers.  Understanding how to choose a nursing home can help you make the right decision.  After all, you want to know that your loved one will be safe and properly cared for. Below are some suggestions to consider before and during the facility is chosen:

  • When visiting the nursing home or assisted living facility, pay attention to the environment:
    • Are the residents calling out for help?
    • How do the nurses respond to the residents?
    • How do the staff members address the residents?  Are they respectful?
  • Is the staff overworked?  Speak to the nursing assistants and other staff members and ask if they work long/double shifts and/or overtime. This could be a sign of short-staffing, which means your loved one might not get the attention he or she needs at the time of need.
  • How is the nursing home or assisted living facility maintained?  Does it appear clean?  Does it smell like urine or have other offensive odors? Attention to the cleanliness of the facility might be a clue as to staffing issues, resources (or lack thereof), and the level of detail paid to the residents.
  • How do the staff members treat each other?  Are they polite and calm or do they speak in a rude/impatient manner?  Do they spend time to talk to the residents or are they quickly running back and forth trying to keep pace with the workload and frenzied environment?  This could clue you in as to how they might treat your elderly loved one.

Care Concerns

  • Bedsores, falls, and bruising could be red flags for neglect and/or abuse.  Are residents being turned and positioned adequately?  Are they assisted with getting up or left to do this on their own?  Don’t be afraid to ask questions and observe as much as possible.
  • Are personal care needs being met?  Are the residents sitting in their own excrement or are they being sufficiently changed?  The answers to these questions could give you an idea as to what to expect.

If you need help with how to choose a nursing home or your loved one is in a Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, or New Jersey nursing home or assisted living facility and you see signs of potential nursing home abuse and/or neglect, please contact Brian Murphy immediately for a free consultation.