When is it time to start looking for a spot in a nursing home facility for a loved one? This is a big question, and one that overwhelms many families. The shortest answer to the question of when to start searching for a nursing home is — before it’s needed.
Start Looking Early
Many facilities have waiting lists, and the best ones take a while to get into. Waiting until a loved one becomes incapacitated due to a medical emergency to find a nursing home can put them at risk for abuse and neglect.
With that in mind, it’s important to think about the need for nursing home services before it’s needed. Making the choice early will help protect the health and welfare of mom and dad when they need it most.
When to Consider Looking for a Nursing Home
Loss of mobility: As long as your family member can get around okay, he or she can seem very independent. Any loss of mobility, whether it’s a fall or stroke or anything else, immediately puts that person at risk. At that point, you’re left planning for home health visits or long-term care in a facility, and it’s usually the latter.
Another good benchmark is how your family member does behind the wheel. We all need cars to go places. When your elderly family member starts to have trouble driving, he or she loses that independence. It’s also a sign that he or she may soon need help with everything else. Look for any significant deterioration of normal daily skills — paying the bills, keeping up a house or handling medications. Medication errors can compound tricky health situations that can lead to a need for long-term care.
Long-Term Care Insurance
When trying to plan for the expense of long-term care there are several options available. Insurance companies now offer long-term care policies that supplement nursing home costs. And, facilities offer contracts that “take in” independent and mobile seniors. These unconventional contracts will guarantee coverage when they need long-term care later. This can help families plan for long term care, so they will not be blindsided with an enormous bill later.
Steve Watrel PA helps families in tragic cases of nursing home abuse and nursing home neglect. Get a professional, caring law firm on your side to protect your loved ones from all sorts of dangerous situations. Let us help you to take advantage of your rights under the law when you are unhappy with how a nursing home facility has treated a family member.