Knowing when it’s time to transition a loved one to a nursing home can be a difficult and very stressful decision to make. That move is a big change in your life, and an even bigger one in your loved one’s. That’s why it is very important to make sure you are making the right decisions every step of the way. There are several things to consider when choosing the best options for your family member. Here are a few tips to help you get started.

  1. Know your options

    Set up a meeting with the Social Worker at each of the facilities you are looking into. They will be able to answer any questions, or concerns you may have prior to admission. Ask people around in the area about nursing homes options and their experiences.
  2. Compare the quality of Care
    Go online to www.medicare.gov/NursingHomeCare to compare nursing homes in your area. This website allows you to pick nursing homes in your area and compare them in ratings, health inspections, staffing, and qualify measures.
  3. Tour the nursing home
    During the tour pay attention to the cleanliness of the facility the staffing, activities that are offered, and meals. Look at the room options and know what you can bring in to make the room feel more like home. Talk to staff to get a sense for what they love about their jobs. It’s important that the people caring for your family member enjoy what they do.
  4. Financials
    Understanding of costs of the facility, what is included in the daily rate, and what your insurance may cover coverage is important to know. It’s also good to provide insurance cards.
  5. Family Involvement

    Make sure you talk with all family members about concerns or questions with transitioning into a nursing home. It is a big decision to make. It is an easier decision to make when there is a strong support system.

Just like any new transition or experience in life, it can take time to adjust. It’s very normal for the nursing home transition to take some time for you and your loved ones to feel well adjusted to the change as well.

When you finally make the decisions to transition into the nursing home and feel they can meet all your needs and desires, make sure you are involved with your loved one’s care and decision making, have your preferences known by the staff, and participate in the activities. You will all adjust, and your loved one will feel more at home if they continue to have a say in their care and activities of daily living.

For more information on transitioning into a nursing home contact Stephanie Gile-Contreraz,CSW, Clinical Social Worker at Epione Pavilion, (608) 744-3958 or visit www.epionepavilion.org.

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