Everyone agrees that preventing long-term care facility neglect is always better than dealing with its aftermath. When choosing a facility, you or a relative can ask other families in your community about their experiences. You can also speak with someone at the local Ombudsman’s office about nursing homes in your area.
However, visiting the facilities on your list in person may allow you to evaluate their suitability and overall resident contentment. If you don’t know what you should be looking for, use the tips below to get started.
Observe everyday operations
Avoid making an appointment to tour facilities. If you schedule a tour, it gives the staff or administrator ample time to address issues that could indicate resident neglect (dirty residents, etc.). Instead, visit the homes on your list unannounced to obtain a much more accurate picture of routine facility operations.
Spot unsanitary or dangerous conditions
If the first thing you notice when entering a long-term care facility is an awful odor or residents that look miserable, it might be a red flag. A sanitary facility should not have any pervasive smell. Homes that provide proper resident care and attention usually have an upbeat vibe.
See how staff interact with residents
Unfortunately, long-term care facility neglect often arises in facilities without sufficient staff. You can typically spot overwhelmed or stressed staff members by their demeanor with residents. If you see nursing home personnel ignoring residents or handling them harshly, it may be best to continue your search.
If you or a loved one has already suffered from nursing home neglect (or abuse), it is time to learn more about your legal options. A good way to start is to become familiar with the laws and regulations governing long-term facility operations in California.