Anyone in a position of authority should have a wealth of experience. The Medical Director, Director of Nursing, nurses, and other staff members should all know to handle the special needs of the elderly and be educated on what to do in case of an emergency or how to handle a case of nursing home abuse. Ask about their experience and if the facility requires a background check. Your loved one will be in their hands, it is important to make sure they have no previous history with nursing home abuse.
If there is a history of nursing home abuse, ask the administrator how the issue was dealt with. It is possible that an incident of nursing home abuse could have occurred despite all good intentions. Seeing how the facility and administrator corrected the problem can offer valuable insight into how a situation might be handled should it happen again.
It is also important to be aware of who owns the facility and if they are local or a national or regional chain. A local owner is more likely to be responsive in the event of nursing home abuse or neglect and is also more apt to be concerned about the residents and reputation of the nursing home.
Take other things into consideration as well. Nursing home abuse can come in many forms. The way the food tastes, looks, how it is prepared and the nutritional value are all very important. Many residents are recovering from illness or injury and need a balanced diet to recover more quickly.
Is there adequate staffing at all times of the day? Understaffing results in many cases of nursing home abuse because the staff is overworked and constantly rushed. Some residents require staff to help them eat. It is important to notice if any other residents may be neglected if the center is short-staffed. How does the staff interact with the residents? Do they seem to care about the residents or are they more interested in getting their tasks done and getting to go home for the day? Staff mentality is also a contributing factor to cases of nursing home abuse.
Check to see if the facility has in-house physical, speech, and occupational therapists. If not, how often do these therapists visit the facility? Are there physicians on-site or that visit frequently? You will want to find out if they use physician’s assistants and nurse assistants.
All of these factors contribute to a healthy and attentive staff that can provide the best care for your loved ones without any neglect or nursing home abuse.