Choosing the Right Care Facility:
When an individual can no longer live independently or requires short term care after a hospital stay, the process of selecting the best alternative care to meet the person’s healthcare needs can be confusing. Often nursing home residents, regardless of age, suffer from chronic illness.
What is important is that a proper mix of professionals such as the facilities social worker, the primary care physician, or the Director of Nurses all are involved in the decision on the most appropriate place in which to receive care. Finding the right facility is a time consuming effort, requires gathering facts needed to help in the decision making process and the first step is to rule out bad choices.
The process used to consider viable rule out possibilities should take into consideration that under Title 22 of the California Code of regulations title 22, all (LTC) facilities are required to clearly post to the public inspection results conducted by the Department of Health Services, Licensing and Certification Branch. These inspections are design to ensure the integrity and delivery of care as prescribed in the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations (42 CFR part 483).
Under these mandates, a LTC facility shall have sufficient nursing staff to provide nursing care, conduct a comprehensive assessment of each residents functional capacity, develop a comprehensive care plan for each resident, ensure the residents do not develop pressures soars, ensure adequate supervision to prevent accidents, ensures that residents maintains acceptable parameters of nutritional status, residents should be free of any significant medication errors and maintain clinical records that are accurately documented. The results of the inspection are posted on the consumer board usually located near the administrator’s office for public review.
Direct contact with the local licensing and certification branch can be beneficial in identifying unusual number of violations. The data received from these agencies are unbiased and have no marketing intentions other than the safety and wellness of the public placed into a long term care setting.
The most important individuals in a nursing home are the Administrator and the Director of Nursing. These individuals are key for ensuring the interdisciplinary team of care givers to include Dietitians, and Medical Directors for the facility. Additional decision considerations could include questions such as will the person being placed feel comfortable in his new surroundings? Will the facility provide the kind of life a resident would want after placement?