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Choosing A Great Care Home Company For You Or Your Loved One

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By Author: Forest Health
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As a leading care home company, our experienced care and nursing centre managers often consult with families and loved ones who benefit from guidance, support and independent advice when making key decisions about the care for themselves or a relative.

We never underestimate the complexity of these conversations, which many find emotional, with concerns about how they can compare one care home to another or what they should ask to verify whether a residential home has the compassion, kindness and sensitivity they want their loved one to be treated with.

Our first tip is to pick a care home provider who welcomes questions and in-person chats and is happy to take as much time as you need to talk you through care planning, facilities, and available care services. It is essential that all parties feel assured that their selected care setting is right for them and that their preferred care home has the necessary team members and support services.


Evaluating Potential Residential Care Facilities

Family members pour time, effort and energy into finding the perfect home for older people and loved ...
... ones and often refer to regulatory inspection ratings published by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in England. These ratings are useful and provide a broad-stroke overview of how well a care home conforms to safeguarding, record-keeping, confidentiality and patient care standards.

You can also use resources such as CareHome.co.uk to access each care centre’s review score to see how other service users and residents feel about the care they have received.

However, it is always valuable to take the opportunity to visit a care home in person. Speaking to all the staff, getting a proper look at accommodation and suites, and seeing how carers engage and connect with their residents is a great indication of whether a care home has a friendly team and delivers good care.

The care teams in each Forest Healthcare location also encourage families and residents to visit any of our facilities that they may be interested in, whether a specialist nursing care centre or residential care home. Having that first-hand experience can make the transition into a care home far smoother and less stressful for all and ensures our care managers and teams are familiar faces.

Next, we’ll run through the questions we’d advise you to ask during those visits and before making any decisions.


1. What Care, Support, Accommodation and Amenities Are Inclusive?

Care homes charge varied fee structures, depending on the type of care required, the accommodation or suite a resident wishes to reserve, and whether the individual or family receive funding support to contribute towards their overall care costs.

Although most amazing care homes offer absolute transparency, it’s worth enquiring during your visit if you are unsure whether everything is included in that fee. For example, you might find that visiting therapists or beauticians offer manicures, haircuts and beauty treatments at an additional charge or that the care home can organise extra amenities within a room for a nominal fee.

Particularly when you are arranging long-term or complex care, you should be informed about any potential changes to care home fees, if these are reviewed annually, or whether you need to make a deposit there and then to avoid losing out on a high-demand accommodation space.

We suggest asking to see either the room or a similar room during your tour, where you can check what is included, what you might be able to bring from home, or what the care home might be able to organise on your behalf. Simple things like a private TV, a comfy sofa, generous wardrobe storage space and a radio can make a big difference.


2. How Does the Care Centre Provide Entertainment, Activities or Opportunities for Socialisation?

Entertainment facilities add real value and ensure that all care home clients, whether living as residents in a dementia care or complex care setting or short-term recovery and rehabilitation care, have plenty of things to do, from crafting to day trips, garden parties to birthday celebrations and movie and quiz nights where residents chat, make friends and relax together.

Although all care homes are required to offer daily activities, the broader the range on offer, the better every resident will be able to pick and choose outings, organised entertainment or group activities that bring them joy.

It’s also a great idea to ask about outdoor activities or visits. Our award-winning care homes place huge value on social interaction and organise all sorts of day trips, cinema evenings, days out or shopping trips for residents who wish to participate and can do so.


3. What Level of Nursing Care or Medical Expertise is Available?

If you are organising a care home place on behalf of a family member with an ongoing or degenerative medical condition or cognitive illness, the standard and availability of nursing support may be key. Care homes normally provide medication reminders and help patients take prescribed medicines at specific intervals, but more in-depth or ongoing supervision may be required.

For example, you might ask how the care team tracks medications and what they would do if a doctor or consultant prescribed a change in dosage. You may also need to know what happens if your loved one becomes ill or needs help with an intravenous line – is there a registered nurse on duty at all times, or does the care home have a resident or nearby doctor they can call upon?


4. How Often Are Family Members and Loved Ones Able to Visit?

Visiting arrangements may vary depending on the type of care delivered. However, even residents with profound disabilities or cognitive impairments benefit from regular visits from people they know and love, and the impact on their mental health is impossible to overstate.

Some care homes have specified visiting hours or durations or might allow a resident to have a maximum number of people per day to avoid overcrowding in smaller facilities. Others will have an open access policy and offer a warm welcome to every relative, taking the time to organise larger gatherings for special events or celebrations.


5. Does the Care Home Cater to Individual Catering Preferences and Dietary Requirements?

Finally, meal times are a focal point for many care homes, and it’s important that your loved one can advise on the types of foods they like to eat – not solely based on medical requirements, allergies or intolerances.

Excellent care is centred around health, well-being and comfort, and providing a varied, tasty and fresh menu every day is hugely important to the happiness and enjoyment of residents. Never hold back from asking to see the menu, enquiring about snacks during the day, or wanting to know whether your relative will be offered a soothing cocoa at bedtime if this is part of their routine.

For further information about comparing care homes, choosing the best care facilities for you or a loved one, or raising questions and concerns during care home visits, please get in touch with Forest Healthcare at any time.

Information Source: - https://www.foresthc.com/choosing-a-great-care-home-company-for-you-or-your-loved-one/

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