If you’re considering assisted living for yourself or for a loved, you likely have a lot of questions. For instance, the quality of life for the person being relocated will be directly impacted by how well the facility fits their needs. To help you begin your journey to finding the right assisted living facility, consider the steps and initial guidelines below.
1. Make a List (or Two)
Finding the right facility means knowing what you are looking for. Everyone’s needs are different so begin with what you’re looking for. Ask yourself some questions:
- Where do you want to be located?
- What amenities are important?
- Do you prefer a large or small facility?
- Do you need specialized care for a condition like dementia or Parkinson’s?
After listing your needs, make a list of the potential candidates. Find out what facilities are in your area by consulting:
- Local agencies
- Friends & family
- Assisted Living Federation of America’s website
2. Make a Call
Begin to research the candidates. Find out more about their services and amenities. Get brochures and floor plans. Determine the cost and see if you can review a sample contract.
3. Plan a Visit (or Two)
There’s no substitute for immersing yourself in an assisted living provider. Make sure that everyone involved in the decision, including the person who will ultimately live there, is part of the tour.
You can learn a lot just through observation.
- Are the residents well-groomed and happy?
- Are the staff friendly and approachable?
- Is the facility clean and odor-free?
- Are the outside grounds neat and well-maintained?
Talk to the staff and residents. Find out how they feel about being there. What kind of culture does the facility foster?
Plan a second, unannounced, visit. Seeing the facility in a non-tour setting can reveal new insights into how it is run. Seeing it during the evening versus the daytime can give a new perspective, too.
4. Assess the Amenities and Services Provided
Every provider will offer different amenities and services. Finding the right combination will be an individual decision. Some of the bigger ones to consider:
- Wheelchair and walker accessibility
- Programs and activities
- Salon and hair care
- Restaurants or cafes
- Walk-in bath or shower
- Physical therapy/ exercise
- On-site physicians
- Laundry service
- 24-hour supervision
- Medication management
In addition, consider the level of care you will need in the future. People with Alzheimer’s or diabetes may require a facility that allows them to transition to a greater level of care.
5. Weigh the Cost
Assisted living is a significant investment. According to the AARP, four out of five families pay out of pocket. In some cases, Medicaid, insurance or government programs can help offset the cost.
Before signing make sure you learn of all costs upfront so there are no surprises.
6. Does it Feel Like Home?
Ultimately you want an assisted living facility that values independence and protects dignity. A place your loved one can call her own. One that truly feels like home.
At Rocky Mountain Assisted Living in Colorado, we’d love to meet you. Let us show you how our vision translates to a happy, comfortable and safe living space for your family member. Contact us today for more information and a tour.