How to choose a care home

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Choosing a care home is about finding the right type of care, in the right place, with the facilities you need. This guide will outline the key things to consider when choosing a care home.

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How to choose a care home

  1. 1. Choosing a care home is about finding the right type ofcare, in the right place, with the facilities you need. Thisguide will outline the key things to consider whenchoosing a care home, to give you the peace of mind thatyou, or your loved one, will be cared for in the best waypossible.Understand the type of care you needIt is important to understand the type of care that you need before choosing a carehome. Do you need nursing or dementia care, or specialist care for Parkinson’s orHuntington’s disease? Do you need residential care if you are finding it difficult tolive on your own at home, or temporary care to recover from an illness or operation?Thinking about the type of care that you need will make it easier to select the righthome for you. Most care homes provide a number of different types of care, whichmay be important to consider if you have changing or complex care needs.
  2. 2. Consider the location of the care homeThe location of the care home is another important factor to consider. It may beimportant that your care home is in an area close to your family and friends. Or,it might be important that your care home is convenient for shops and publictransport. Try to find a care home that is in the right place for you.Find out the additional care services providedMany care homes provide additional care services including physiotherapy,occupational therapy, chiropody and complementary therapies, such asmassage and reflexology. Care homes may also arrange for dentists, opticiansand hairdressers to visit residents. If these services are important to you, makesure you that your care home provides them.Decide which activities and leisure facilities you needConsider the types of activities and leisure facilities that you would like to beoffered in your care home. Many care homes run excellent regular activityprograms for residents, such as exercise, day trips, support groups and groupactivities. Your care home might also provide a library facility and access tocooking and gardening activities.
  3. 3. Check ratings and reviewsCare homes are regulated by the Care Quality Commission, so check the mostrecent inspection report of your prospective care home to find out if there areany areas of concern.Visit prospective care homesIt is important to visit a number of care home before choosing which one is foryou. When visiting each care home, it is important to meet the staff andresidents and ask all the questions you need. Make a checklist of the things thatare important to you in a care home. Take a tour to check what the bedroomsand communal areas are like, visit the gardens, and assess the generalatmosphere of the care home. Find out what the meals are like and whatservices and activities are provided. Is the care home in a quiet location, anddoes the area feel safe and secure?Following these steps to choosing a care home willhelp ensure that you, or your loved one, are beinggiven the right care in the right place.

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