It’s only natural to feel daunted if moving into a care home, but there are few things you and your carer can do to ease the uncertainty and make settling in as smooth and seamless as possible. We’ve put together this guide to help you and anyone assisting you make the experience a positive one and give you peace of mind.
Finding the right care home
If you’ve decided to look for residential care to help support your needs or condition, it’s important to find a home that you’ll enjoy living and socialising in. Here are a few things to look out for during those all-important first impressions:
- Are the buildings, rooms and accessibility of grounds kept in good condition?
- Do you feel positive when you enter the building?
- Is the care home clean and fresh?
- Are the staff and residents welcoming?
- Does it seem organised – were staff prepared for your visit?
- Are they interested in what you have to say?
- Are you able to choose between a male or female carer?
- Are the staff accredited, certified and well-trained?
- Are there staff available who are trained for your condition or needs?
- Do staff sit and chat with residents?
- Are there dedicated dementia specialists?
- Are bedrooms and bathrooms shared or private?
- Is it easy for your loved ones and friends to come visit?
- Are there shops and amenities nearby that you could easily access?
- Do the bathroom and washroom facilities meet your accessibility needs?
- Is the furniture set out in a way that allows for both socialising and solitude?
- What facilities are included in the rooms and common areas? Are there televisions? Radios? Computers? Books and newspapers readily available?
- What security is in place to make sure residents are safe?
- Is there a residents’ call-bell system in the rooms?
- Is everything well signposted and clear?
- Is a trial stay available?
Funding your care
There are many different ways that you can go about financing your care depending on the length of your stay and outcome of your financial assessment. Having this necessary administration organised in plenty of time means that on moving day you and your carer can concentrate on making sure you feel at home.
- Do you understand how the fees are structured, calculated and collected?
- Do you need to pay a deposit?
- How often are fees reviewed?
- Have you decided how you are going to pay for your care?
- Do you need to find your local authority and apply for assistance?
- Have you completed the process of applying for your deferred payment agreement if needed?
- Are any extra services, groups or items clearly set out and easily paid for?
Your day-to-day needs
Whether you want to socialise in common areas playing games and taking part in groups, or have quiet time in the tranquillity of your own room watching television, it’s important to know about the day-to-day life you’ll be living and how it fits in with your requirements.
- Can residents choose what they want to wear?
- How do staff ensure everyone’s clothes are kept separate and not mixed up?
- Do residents eat together or can they choose to eat in their rooms?
- Are there sample menus you can look at? And how often does the menu change?
- What times are snacks available each day?
- If you have special dietary requirements, can they be catered for?
- Are residents and visitors allowed to make their own drinks?
- How often do residents get access to snacks?
- Is there a clear schedule of daily activities available?
- Is there an activities co-ordinator?
What to do with your valuables & furniture
Little touches can help to make your residential care stay feel like home. Although it will differ between care facilities, you can usually bring personal belongings to varying degrees. Of course, you’ll want to know that your precious valuables are kept safe and secure, so double check processes and things like access to safes.
- Can residents bring their own furniture or personal belongings for their room?
- What happens to valuables?
- Is there secure storage in each room? And who has access to this?
- Are valuables covered by the home’s contents insurance?
Visitors and loved ones
Moving into a care home can feel overwhelming, so seeing the familiar faces of loved ones can help to ease the change. By regularly having visitors, over time it should be able to feel like welcoming them to your own home.
- Are there any specific visiting time restrictions?
- Are young children allowed?
- Can visitors sit in the common area as well as private spaces?
- Are pets allowed in the home to stay with you?
- If they can’t stay, are pets allowed to come and visit?
- Are there refreshments available for visitors?
- Can visitors stay the night if required?
Things your carer can help with
For the carer, there are plenty of things they can do to help make the move as seamless and painless as possible. Remember, it’s ok to feel that the move is difficult for you too, but making sure you’re there every step of the way can help. Once they’re in and settled, you can make sure that everything is going smoothly:
- Regular visits means you can see how well they’re being looked after.
- You can ask how they are doing and whether they are enjoying it
- Find out the types of activities they’re doing and ask if they want to sign up for more.
- Have catch ups with the staff and check on your loved one’s happiness and any health issues.
- Give the staff an opportunity to ask any questions your loved one may not be able to answer.
- Be sure to give plenty of detail about their likes and dislikes and help to fill out their personal care plan.
- Double check that you are encouraged to be part of your loved one’s life in the home.
- Ask about the serious incidents or safeguarding processes if anything were to happen.
If you have any questions about yours or your loved one’s stay at either of our Weymouth care homes, then be sure to get in touch with our friendly team. We offer warm welcomes to all residents and their friends and families, and strive to do everything in our power to make our home feel like theirs.
If you would like to arrange a visit or discuss your residential care needs please call Peter Fry 01305 78 78 11.
See the Latest CQC report for Friary Care – Friary House and Kingsley Court, Weymouth