Assessing the suitability of an Aged Care Facility covers a lot of factors. Of course it needs to be in the right location, close enough for family to visit and in an area your loved one feels connected to. Then, the type of room on offer is very important. Is your loved one going to be happy in a shared room or prefer the privacy of a single room? Is it essential for them to have their own bathroom, like the gentleman in our last blog? His daughter told me that he just wouldn’t cope sharing a bathroom with others. The atmosphere of the facility and attitude of the staff is very important too. Will you feel welcome when you visit your parent or partner? Is the facility light, cheery and well decorated or does is feel drab and depressing? Are the staff friendly, do you feel they have their resident’s best interests at heart? Do they communicate well with you? The staffing is another issue, is there an adequate number of registered nurses to care for the residents or is the number of carers disproportionate. Some facilities have cut back on registered nurses and enrolled nurses and are relying more heavily on carers, who cost less but also have less qualifications and abilities.
If you find aged care accommodation that meets all these criteria the next hurdle is a financial one and that can become quite complicated. You need to take into account all the charges and be aware that many facilities are now charging the extra additional daily services fee. My advice, and that of the Department of Ageing, is that people entering care should seek the advice of an Aged Care Financial Specialist. For a small fee they can advise on the ongoing cost of care, how long the money available will last and can often suggest ways of structuring the finances so you save money. I often refer my clients to trusted Aged Care Financial Specialists.
With all my years of experience and knowledge of Aged Care Facilities I am well placed to help you find the most suitable facility. So please feel free to contact me to discuss your loved one’s needs. I will come to visit you at home or your place of work, whichever suits you best.