Where do I begin when navigating housing options?
The doctor just informed you that it would be unsafe for your senior loved one to return to their home without 24/7 supervision. You have limited time to find a new ‘home’. Where do you begin to find your way through the maze of housing options, care needs, budget and amenities? Don’t go it alone- Referral agencies and placement consultants are a valuable resource to save time and anxiety. These professionals are familiar with the numerous options and availability. Many also review the state survey and public disclosure file for any record of criminal activity or lack of compliance with laws/rules.
Step 1: Gain detailed knowledge of the medical/ assistance needs of the resident. This will narrow the type of community to those that are licensed and capable of providing the proper care. It may be awkward for families to ask the personal questions related to care needs and personal assistance; sometimes an objective third person is able to ask more detailed questions and uncover concerns or fears while helping the resident maintain a sense of privacy.
Step 2: Know your budget. Community fees may vary, with application fees, deposits, levels of care and ancillary services. A placement consultant may be able to help you to better balance the big picture.
Step 3: Focus on the geographic area that fits best. This is a new chapter in their life, and they will be creating a whole new social network. The goal is to accommodate frequent visitation of the resident’s support system. Proximity to an established network of friends and family is an important factor, should any healthcare or emotional changes occur.
Step 4: Visit the communities. After narrowing the field to those that best fit your needs, you will be better able to look at the amenities, services and activities. Get to know the activities offered, meet the staff, and try the food. These are the things that make a community feel like home and help aid the adjustment process.
Consultants are familiar with numerous communities, services offered, fee structures, and activity programs. Fees are paid by the communities, and the service is free to you! The benefit is a reliable and knowledgeable resource at no cost to your family.
Provided by: Jennifer Cook, Living Right Senior Placement
For more information: www.LivingRight.net, 503-780-7353
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