One of the most difficult decisions you may ever be faced with is choosing a nursing home for your father. Recognizing that nursing home care is necessary to keep your father safe and healthy does not make the task any easier. Once the decision has been made, however, the next step is to choose the best facility possible. Choosing a nursing home can be emotionally and physically exhausting given that your father’s health and happiness are at stake. To help you choose the right facility, an Oklahoma City nursing home planning attorney at Parman & Easterday offers tips on how to pick the best nursing home for your father.
Asking the Right Questions
Although many long-term care facilities provide competent and compassionate care to residents, the truth is that nursing home abuse and neglect occurs far too often in the United States. One in ten Americans age 60 and older admit to having experienced some form of elder abuse, yet only one in every 14 cases of abuse is believed to be reported. Sadly, more than 40 percent of nursing home residents have reported abuse, and more than 90 percent report that they or another resident of the facility have been neglected.
While there is no way to completely eliminate the possibility that a loved one will become the victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, asking the right questions when evaluating and choosing a facility can go a long way toward protecting your loved one. With that in mind, you may wish to consider asking the following questions when considering a nursing home:
- What is your staff to patient ratio?
- Is there a medical doctor on call 24/7?
- What is your procedure if a resident has an abuse or neglect complaint?
- What type of background investigation do you do on new hires?
- What is your staff turnover rate?
- Have you ever been disciplined or fined for a violation of state or federal laws or regulations?
- What social programs and/or activities are available for residents?
- Can I visit my parent anytime I want?
- Do residents have options for meals or is there a set menu for each meal?
- Do you offer transportation services?
Follow Some Simple Steps
Also make sure that you follow some simple steps when choosing a nursing home for your father, including:
- Discuss your father’s health care needs with professionals. Schedule appointments with your loved one’s doctors and ask what is needed in terms of the level of care and any special medical needs your loved one may have. Add to that your own knowledge regarding medical needs if you have been providing care.
- Research facilities. Do your own research on facilities that interest you. One reliable source of information is the Oklahoma State Department of Health’s searchable database. You can also check to see if a facility has complaints filed against it on the OSDH website.
- Schedule tours. Schedule official tours of your top five or six nursing home options. While touring each facility, try and talk to residents who live there. Pay attention to the things that matter most to you and your loved one and ask as many questions as possible.
- Show up unannounced. An official, scheduled tour is certainly necessary; however, you should also make a point of showing up when you are not expected so you can see the facility in a different light.
Contact an Oklahoma City Nursing Home Planning Attorney
For additional information, please join us for an upcoming FREE seminar. If you have questions or concerns about nursing home planning, contact an experienced Oklahoma City estate planning attorney at Parman & Easterday by calling 405-843-6100 to schedule your appointment today.
Nationwide, the average cost of a year in LTC was over $100,000 for 2019 – and Medicare will not cover the cost of that care. Although Medicaid will help with LTC costs, you need to plan ahead to ensure you qualify without losing your retirement nest egg.
Victims of elder abuse/neglect are often embarrassed to be a victim, so they do not report the abuse. In addition, many victims of elder abuse are dependent on the perpetrator, causing them to fear reprisals if they speak up.
Yes. To keep your father safe and decrease the likelihood that he will become the victim of elder abuse or neglect, visit frequently and follow up on anything that makes you suspicious.