If you are helping a loved one transition to a nursing home, you might be feeling anxious or worried about choosing a facility. Throughout West Virginia, there are many facilities that provide quality care. Sadly, however, there are also establishments where nursing home neglect occurs. Learning how to identify signs of quality care may help you keep your family member out of harm’s way.
It’s important to be fully aware of your loved one’s needs before you begin touring nursing facilities. For instance, does he or she need round-the-clock supervision? Are there specific dietary needs? Does your loved one have dementia or a similar condition? If your loved one is in relatively good health, does he or she like to socialize and participate in daily activities? After compiling a list of specific needs and goals, you can start narrowing down the options.
The executive staff sets the tone
When visiting nursing homes to determine a good fit for your loved one, don’t be afraid to ask questions about the staff. This information can tell you a lot about quality care. A frequent turnover of department heads is often a sign of trouble. If the heads of nursing, social activities and food departments have been working there a long time, it’s a good sign.
Check for bad odors and uncleanliness
When a West Virginia nursing home is providing quality care, the environment is pleasant. Rooms, hallways and public areas such as restrooms should be clean. While patients in such facilities may have health issues that cause an occasional foul odor, a constant stench of urine, feces or vomit, is a sign of substandard care.
Would you like to eat the food they are serving?
Remember that once you choose a nursing home, your loved one will be eating three meals a day there. The food the facility provides might not be as good as the home cooking your family is accustomed to; however, when the food should be appetizing. If you can’t identify what’s on the plate, it smells awful or you notice that people aren’t eating it, you might want to choose a different facility for your family member.
If problems arise after your loved one moves into a nursing home
Once you have helped your family member move into a West Virginia nursing home, it’s a good idea to make unscheduled visits so that you can get a clear idea of the type of care staff members are providing. If your loved one looks disheveled, seems afraid, has experienced unexplained weight loss or has injuries, it merits further investigation.
If you suspect nursing home neglect, you can enlist support from local law enforcement, patient advocates or a local legal team to help you resolve the issue. Every nursing patient has a right to expect quality care, and there is no excuse for neglect or abuse.