Important Questions to Ask before Moving Your Parent to Assisted Living

Your parents did their best to take care of you while you were growing up, and now that they’re older, it’s time to pay it forward and make sure they receive the best senior care.

Many older Americans would rather stay in their homes if they could, but often times health problems make it necessary for them to move into an assisted-living community. These communities can be excellent places for seniors to live while receiving the medical care they need.

The assisted-living industry is growing and there are many options to choose from if you’re looking for the right fit for your parent(s). But many assisted-living facilities across the country are suffering from staffing shortages and other funding issues, according to Consumer Reports, making it more crucial than ever to do your due diligence when researching the right assisted living to move your parent(s) into.

To help you navigate the field, here are some important questions to ask yourself before moving your parent(s) into assisted living.

What are the needs of your loved one?

The medical care, amenities and other services provided in assisted-living communities vary from place to place, so understanding the desires and needs of your parent(s) is key to making the right choice. Most assisted-living communities can help with tasks such as daily bathing, dressing, and taking medications, but it is important to understand exactly what your parent(s) will have done for them before moving them in. Getting a medical evaluation for your parent(s) before moving them into assisted living is also a wise move so that you are aware of any health concerns prior to their arrival at their new home.

How good is the senior care?

Once you know what services are provided by the assisted living community, you then want to get a feel for the quality of the senior care they provide. First thing’s first: make sure the facility is licensed to provide assisted living. Using online research, you should be able to track down the facility’s inspection record, which will inform you of any complaints that assisted-living community has had against it. For other insights that you might not find in an inspection report, you can try talking to current residents to get their feelings for the quality of the senior care at their assisted living community.

What are the eviction policies?

Consumer Reports has also noted that a frequent complaint against some assisted-living communities is unreasonable threats of eviction. Some assisted-living communities have cited lack of payment or “health care needs that exceed their capacity” as reasons for evicting tenants. Make sure you read the contract thoroughly before signing anything or moving your parent(s) into an assisted-living community, and be clear on the discharge terms.

What will it cost?

Assisted living is often times expensive. Medicare does not pay for long-term care, leaving most of the costs to be paid out of pocket. If your parent(s) is covered by Medicaid, some of the costs may be covered, but that coverage varies from state to state. Some assisted-living communities offer their services in packages, while others charge a base rate and allow you to add on other services as you see fit. Figure out your budget and evaluate all of the options until you find the one that works best for you and your parent(s).

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