The search for the right assisted living facility can be daunting for families who are new to the process. There are a variety of options available in every size and location imaginable. It can, therefore, be difficult to know what traits to look for in a senior housing community.
Being well prepared, with an idea of your loved one’s care need and lifestyle preferences is important. Also being aware of additional desires may help you stay organized when touring multiple communities in search of the right fit.
At Seniorly, we encourage families to ask tons of questions to ensure they get the most out of the experience.
Before touring, it’s wise to have an idea of your loved one’s move-in timing, budget, and care needs. This will ensure that you’re not wasting your time visiting communities that aren’t a good fit.
Additionally, you should be able to provide the community with information on your loved one’s dietary restrictions, medications, and mobility. This will help them understand if they have the staff and resources to support your loved one as they age in place. Furthermore, you should keep in mind the following questions to ask while on your community tour.
What is the staff to resident ratio? Is there a Registered Nurse or Certified Nursing Assistant on staff? What are their hours? Does the staff provide 24-hour assistance with activities of daily living (ADL’s) including toileting, bathing, dressing, etc.?
Does the community offer both private and shared rooms? What about bathrooms? Is housecleaning for personal living spaces included in the price? If not, what is the fee? What furnishings are provided? Are pets allowed? What kind?
How many meals are provided per day? Are there set times? Does the menu vary? How often? Can meals be tailored to a resident’s dietary needs? Can visiting guests dine with residents? Is there a charge? Can we sample the food on our tour?
What common spaces are available to residents? Are there outdoor spaces? Does the community have special amenities such as a beauty salon, fitness room, etc.? Is there a media/TV room?
Can we look at the activities schedule? Do residents interact with the surrounding community? Are there regular outings? Are residents actively encouraged to participate?
Is medication management provided by community staff? Is self-administration allowed? Is transportation offered for medical appointments? How often are care plans reviewed and updated for each resident? Does the community include the resident, family, and primary care physician in conversations about changing care needs?
After narrowing your options to a handful of communities you like, it’s important to research any inspection reports and citations that may have been filed against the community. This will help you make the most informed decision when it comes to choosing a future home for a relative or loved one. Visit the Community Care Licensing website to learn more.
What is the most important factor in finding a senior housing community for a loved one? What services are a must-have? What additional amenities would be desirable? Add your thoughts to the comments section below!