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Retirement Community Aid May 10, 2015

Looking for a nursing home for mom? Here are five things to consider.

This week marks the beginning of the American Health Care Association’s National Nursing Home Week. So, in the spirit of celebrating the nursing home, we bring you a list of important things to consider when researching a nursing home for your loved one:

Is the nursing home conveniently located?

Chances are you will want to visit often, so the nursing home you choose for your loved one should be convenient for you and the other members of the family. You’ll want also to be sure that it’s relatively near your loved one’s doctor’s office and within a reasonable distance to a hospital, just in case.

Is this nursing home somewhere I would want to spend time?

Look around when you’re visiting the facility. Use your eyes, nose and ears to determine if this is a place you would want to spend time. If it’s not…chances are it’s not a good fit for your loved one either. Be sure to pay special attention to:

  • The condition of the facility and grounds: are they clean and well cared for?
  • Are the residents’ clothes neat and clean? Hair well kept? Skin clear?
  • Do you notice any unpleasant odors or food smells?
  • Are the caretakers pleasant and engaged? Is there cheerful music? Laughter and conversation between workers and residents?
  • Is it safe? Are the doors locked or monitored by some type of security?
  • Do the residents get access to outdoor space?

What kinds of personal amenities are available at the nursing home?

Many facilities provide home-like amenities for their residents in order to make the experience of living in a nursing home feel less institutional. Ask about the amenities your loved one would like to have. Perhaps it’s the ability to bring along a beloved pet, or a trip to the hair salon each week.

What are the costs of the nursing home, and how will we pay for it?

Selection of a nursing home for your loved one is a big financial decision that should be carefully considered and all options weighed. In some cases, a portion of the cost may be covered by Medicaid or Medicare. In others, most of the cost will be paid for privately. Discuss the payment options with the admissions staff, as well as your personal financial adviser so that there are no surprises.

Do your research.

There are many choices available for nursing home care today. Take as much time as you have to find a facility that will fit your family’s needs. The American Health Care Association has a dedicated website with lots of useful information for making this important decision.

If you are interested in scheduling a tour of Country Meadows’ skilled nursing facilities in Bethlehem, PA, or South Hills, PA, contact us, we would be happy to discuss your family’s situation and how our care might be right for you.


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