Discharge planners and care staff have a wonderful chance to help older adults. As family members or close friends reach the Golden Years of life, it may be necessary for them to move out of their independent home or apartment and into an assisted living community. It is never an easy choice to give up that freedom, and the decision is often made out of necessity or as a precautionary measure. Older adults may have illnesses that require the close attention of medically-trained staff, or have physical mobility issues that make living alone difficult.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, there are 39,000 assisted living facilities in the United States. Residents of Minnesota have several choices when it comes to selecting an assisted living community. The following tips will help guide your decision-making process to ensure a suitable assisted living residence is located.
Look at Location
If it is important for an individual to be able to be easily visited by loved ones, you’ll want to find assisted living community in Minnesota that is in the designated area they desire. Minnesota’s population is centered largely in the Twin Cities metropolitan area, and there are numerous suburbs and types of communities to choose from.
Location may not be the primary factor in the selection process, but if family togetherness is an important priority, location needs to weigh heavily in the decision for an assisted living community.
Know the Medical Needs
Perhaps the most important factor in your recommendation should be the medical status of the patient and the capacity of the assisted living residence to meet those needs. Patients with minor medical needs do not need to be placed in a community that provides, for example, extensive 24/7 care and attention. On the other hand, patients with advanced health issues such as dementia or physical handicaps that confine them to a wheelchair, may need assisted living communities that have well-trained staff and proper facilities to provide for their cares on a daily basis.
Take time to review all paperwork and charts and familiarize yourself with the needs of each individual. While assisted living may be the best option for several older adults, transitional care, memory care, long-term care, or respite care can also meet various needs.
Research Programs and Amenities
After leading full, happy lives, older adults will be able to find assisted living facilities that provide the mental and physical stimulation they deserve to continue leading a happy life. Be sure to take the time to thoroughly investigate the programs and amenities offered.
Does the community allow frequent visits? Are meals provided in a community dining area that allows seniors to consume nutritious meals while communicating and socializing with other seniors? What about physical and social options? Many assisted living facilities organize shopping excursions, holiday parties, and onsite festivals to encourage their residents to remain active and social.
Consider Security and Safety
Everyone worries about older parents or friends living on their own, and those same safety concerns should extend to assisted living facilities in MN. Community staff members, independent contractors or workers, family members of other residents, and even other residents can potentially pose a security threat to your loved ones. Investigate the safety and security measures in place at an assisted living community before placing a senior patient in the residence.
Pay a Visit
Whenever possible, pay a visit to the residence you are considering recommending to a patient or their family. The best way to get a feel for the community, experience the atmosphere it offers, and view the quality of the amenities, is to spend time at the residence. If possible, eat a meal while there to judge the quality, and interact with the staff and residents. This will help provide an overall sense of satisfaction with any residence.