How To Find a Care Home
When your loved one, whether a parent or a family member, reaches a time in their life where they require care, it is very important to know what steps to take to find them the care home that best suits them. This can be a confusing process, made harder still by the stress of your loved one being unwell. That is why we have put this step-by-step guide together for you to use so that you can find the right care home.
Step 1: Identify the need for care
Identifying a need for care means that you need to consider the quality of life of your loved one and decide whether they can take care of themselves and all of their needs, as well as being happy in their home. If they are visibly unhappy or can no longer care for themselves then it may be time to look for a care home for them.
Step 2: Begin searching for a care home
This should be an extensive search and focused on a certain area, either somewhere close to the family or close to where your loved one lives. Use Google, talk to social workers, and get advice from family members and friends who have loved ones in a care home already. Pay attention to reviews from a broad range of different platforms, such as Google and carehome.co.uk, and draw up a shortlist.
Step 3: Make visits to care homes
You should visit all care homes on your shortlist, no matter how long the list is. You will get a good feel for a care home from seeing it in person and speaking to the team and residents can give you valuable information.
Step 4: Assess the financial situation
With a clear understanding of finances, affordability and budgets, you will be able to include and exclude care homes on this basis. You must know your financial situation inside and out before committing to a care home.
Step 5: Get advice from a financial advisor
If you have any doubts at all about the costs of a care home and would like to learn more about budgeting for this, then we recommend that you speak to a qualified financial advisor. They will be well-versed regarding your options and can give you advice regarding making the best decision for your loved one and the family.
Step 6: Consult a solicitor
You should consult your solicitor regarding Power of Attorney for both ‘finance’ and ‘health and welfare’, and speak to them about the difference between a Lasting Power of Attorney and an Enduring Power of Attorney to make arrangements that best suit you and your family. This will be useful to know moving forward and is best practice before selecting a care home. You can also talk to the solicitor about any other legal advice you may need.
Step 7: Make a second visit with your loved one
Once you have a clear understanding of your finances and have a shortlist still in place of care homes that are suited to your loved one and are affordable, it is time to visit these care homes with the family member in question, if they are able. They can speak to people themselves and see an example of accommodation, have a walk around the grounds and soak up the atmosphere. Speak to the team and ask if you can stay for a bite to eat or take part in an activity to get a glimpse of what life will be like in this care home. You should make as many visits as possible to afford your loved one the greatest choice.
Step 8: Choosing a care home
With all homes visited it is time to make a decision, this can be done as a family, by the loved one, or as a group decision, the exact specifics will vary depending on your circumstances.
Step 9: Request a care assessment
When you have made a decision, you can then request your chosen care home complete an assessment to ensure that they can provide the best care for your loved one. You will then be informed whether or not your chosen care home can care for your loved one.
Step 10: Moving in
Once all the assessments have been completed, the contract signed and everybody is happy, your loved one will move into their new home. You should be invited to share a meal with your loved one on the first day and spend time with them to help them get settled. You should also expect to meet the key members of the team, such as the General Manager and the care team who will be looking after your loved one.
We sincerely hope that this simple guide has been of use to you and that you can use it to help you in finding a care home for your loved one. If you would like to talk to us about anything in this guide then do not hesitate to contact us, we are happy to help. For more help and advice, please click here.