This week we look at the qualities which make a good care home – part of our recent series of articles on social care and the community.
If the time has come for you to start looking for a care home, don’t let the decision overwhelm you. There’s a lot to consider and think about, but before you embark on your search, read on for our six top qualities which make a good care home.
1. Good grounds
It’s likely you’ll be living in your chosen care home for quite a long time, so make sure you like what you see when you visit. No one wants to live among a dirty and poorly maintained building, so have a good look around. Are the gardens well cared for? Are the communal areas nice and clean? Do the kitchens look hygienic? Care homes are monitored by the Care Quality Commission so must adhere to certain rules and regulations.
2. Care in the community
Whether you’re a shy and retiring sort, or you like to be the life and soul of the party, you’ll want to make friends. Find out what sort of community there is at the care home. Do they hold coffee mornings for all the residents? Are there regular outings arranged? Do they encourage residents to visit one another in their rooms? What sort of games or activities are held for everyone to participate in?
3. Communication is key
Communication is extremely important and it’s vital care home management recognise this. Find out whether residents ever get a chance to meet with management to learn of any forthcoming changes or to express any problems they may have. Communication with your family or close friends is also really important. Should you ever become ill you want to know that the right people have been contacted quickly, so they can be with you.
4. Certified staff
Care home staff should be highly qualified in what they do and have the relevant qualifications to prove this. Ideally you want to find a home that has at least a few members of staff who are experienced and have worked at a few places. It’s also crucial they have undergone the relevant DBS Checks, which means they have been vetted and deemed safe to work with the elderly. There are a few different levels of DBS Checks, so if you would like to find out more information about what’s needed in a care home get in touch with uCheck.
5. Resident respect
No matter how old you are, you should always be treated with the respect you deserve. It’s not always easy to ascertain how members of staff treat the residents when you’re just a visitor, so don’t be afraid to ask people who live there. Ask them if they’re happy and if they enjoy it. Spend some time with a few of the employees too to see if you like them and if there’s a rapport between you.
6. Home from home?
Moving home whatever age you are is difficult, but the older you get, the more set in your ways you become. But, if you’ve made the decision that a care home is for you, then the biggest decision has already been made. One of the most important qualities to look for when finding a good care home is to imagine if you could live there. Ask yourself whether you think you’d be happy living there. If the answer is “yes” then you’ve found your care home.
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