Choosing the right assisted living community is one of the most important decisions you and your loved ones may ever make. If you are just beginning to search, it can be difficult to know what to look for – so we have compiled a list of some of the most important factors to observe during your visit.
- Ask questions about safety
In any assisted living setting, safety is one of the most essential areas to investigate. Knowing that your loved one is taken care of at all times and that their needs are being met creates peace of mind. When visiting a community, pay attention to the bathrooms. Are they accessible? Do they have grab bars in the right places? You may want to ask the nurses how residents contact them if they need anything. Do they have pull cords in the rooms? Do residents wear pendants? You may also want to ask if there are registered nurses in the community 24 hours a day and how they staff their building during the day vs. the evening. Ask specific questions about how the staff will care for your loved one’s specific needs.
- Is the staff friendly?
Pay attention to how the staff interacts with other residents. Are they making eye-contact and spending time in conversation? It is also a good idea to come with questions for the management team. When planning your visit, ask to meet with them and take some time to get those questions answered.
- Schedule a visit during an activity
Before you visit, look the community up online and check their activity calendar. Do you see anything listed that your loved-one would be interested in? Is there a good balance of internal activities and outings away from the community? Are there religious services? Find an activity of interest and schedule your tour at that time so you can attend. Pay attention to how many people are at the event and how engaged the staff and residents are.
- Come for lunch/dinner
The dining experience is very important. Most retirement communities will allow you and your loved-ones to enjoy a meal free of charge – so take advantage of it. Visit with the dining services manager and find out about dining options. Do they have diabetic entrees? Do residents order off a menu or are their choices limited each day? Is it mandatory to eat in the dining room or can residents have meals delivered to their room? How many meals are served per day?
- Ask around
Talk to others you may know who have loved ones living in the community you are visiting. If you know any current residents, stop by and pay them a visit to find out what they think about it. Ask your doctor their opinion since they may have referred people there in the past. In the end, trust your instincts. You’ll know the right community when you find it.
If you are currently searching for yourself or a loved one, Primrose would be honored to help you learn more about the assisted living options available to you. Just visit www.primroseretirement.com for more information or to contact the Primrose closest to you.