Assisted Living Facility Warning Signs
It is possible that you have taken all steps to choose a suitable assisted living facility for your family member based on the available information and your own research. However, the proof is in the pudding.
Assisted Living Facility Warning Signs
You will come to know after your family members have spent some time in the assisted living facility. You can gauge the suitability of the facility after looking for warning signs from your visits there and feedback from your family members.
Here’s a look at 9 assisted living facility warning signs you must be aware of so that you can decide whether the facility is right for your family members.
1. Changes in behavior
The first warning sign you will get is from the behavioral changes you notice in your family members. If the facility is agreeable to them then they will exhibit cheerfulness and speak well about the facility.
If not, they will speak ill of the facility demanding that they be taken to a better facility. You can seek their feedback and see if the shortcomings can be removed.
2. Poor rating
There are some agencies which rate the assisted living facilities. For instance, US News rates about 16,000 assisted living facilities across the U.S. You can peruse its website and check the rating and see if the facility is among the poorly rated ones.
If it is, you may want to relocate your family members.
3. Disciplinary actions
If the facility has performed badly, then it is probable that the facility is subject to disciplinary action from the government agencies (both federal and state) and regulatory authorities, advises attorney Jonathan Rosenfeld, who specializes in legal cases against assisted living facilities.
You must seek an explanation from the facility’s administration and satisfy yourself that the action is not detrimental to your family members’ stay at the facility.
4. Unsatisfactory explanations
It is a good habit to discuss with the facility’s administration about the various aspects of the facility’s services in relation to your family members staying there. You will get a feel for the facility’s reaction to your queries.
If you find their explanations dodgy or inadequate, you may want to rethink.
Typically, any facility will have high rates of staff attrition if the management is not empathetic to its staff members. You can see this by noticing changes of staff members assigned to your family members.
You can also seek this information from the management and check for yourself if the attrition rate is well below dangerous levels.
You can get a feel of the atmosphere prevailing in the facility when you make your visits there. You can gauge the atmosphere by observing the staff and their behavior.
If you find some cause for worry such as poor hygiene, inadequate and poorly maintained uniforms, absence of cheerfulness in the staff, general loitering and no spring in the steps then you must take it up seriously and get your doubts cleared.
7. Medical negligence
If your family members have signed up for receiving medical attention, you can gauge poor medical attention received by inspecting your family members for the appearance of bed sores, infections, bruises, changes in disposition, malnourishment, dehydration and the like.
If they are too severe, it is prudent to relocate.
8. Breakdown in facilities
A sure warning sign that begs avoiding the facility is one of negligence of amenities and facilities. The AC not working, electric bulbs fused, poor condition of stethoscope, BP monitor, thermometer, poor upkeep of surroundings and such other signs clearly point to some sort of negligence or indifference on the part of management.
You must examine these and satisfy yourself that it could be one off and not systemic.
9. Absence of discipline
You can gauge the discipline of the staff by observing their behavior. If you find them constantly on the mobile phone or gossiping in the corridors or walking about aimlessly then it is a sure sign of lack of control of staff.
This needs to be taken into account to decide on continuing in the facility or not.
These are some of the assisted living facility warning signs that you can perceive when you interact with the facility and its people.
Ultimately, you will know for sure after a few visits and feedback from your family members whether this facility is the most appropriate or not. When it is time to quit, you will know. Your gut feeling will tell you that.
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