Finding the Right Alzheimer’s Care Unit for Your Loved One

by | Dec 17, 2014 | Senior Health

Alzheimer care is one of the more complicated scenarios you can find yourself in when trying to locate suitable living arrangements for a loved one. Alzheimer’s disease requires around the clock devoted and specially trained care givers in order to do the job adequately, especially in the disease’s later stages. When determining where to have your elderly loved one taken care of you have to make sure their facility and staff specializes in dementia type diseases such as Alzheimer’s. Steps should be taken to verify a facility is the right choice for your afflicted loved one.

•   Request a copy of the facilities mission statement. Does it portray a team which wants to heal and improve the quality of life of its patients?

•   Does the facility have the proper equipment and procedures in place to prevent a tenant from leaving the Alzheimer’s care unit?

•   What is the facility’s position on physical restraints and/or chemically enforced restraint should the need arise?

•   Are there rooms specifically arranged for food and activities which are utilized only by dementia patients?

•   Verify the patients will have at least 60 hours of dementia appropriate activities per week and request a copy of the past couple months activity calendars.

•   Is there an adequate staff to person ratio? For an overnight shift there should be a 1:9 ratio or better, all other shifts should be at least 1:5.

•   How man nursing assistants and agency nurses are utilized in their operation?

•   Are the same nurses assigned to each individual on a daily basis?

•   Will the facility allow you to sit for awhile and observe the activity?

Keep in mind a lot of the people who provide tours and information to potential new resident’s families are trained to answer questions in a very politically correct way. Make sure you spend time asking questions from other staff in the facility if permitted, but most importantly look for signs throughout the facility tour which indicate the above points are being spoken about honestly. Does there appear to be adequate staff in the facility? Can you see any signs of activities taking place for the tenants? You can learn a lot about a facility simply by observing what is happening during a routine day.

If your loved one is suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, it can be a challenge to find appropriate care for them. If you are looking in the Nebraska, Iowa, or Kansas areas take a look at Dial Retirement Communities. Their specialized Alzheimer’s care services can help make the choice easier.




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