Turning the tables, changing your perspective, and taking a fresh look at a problem can often reveal new insights. This is especially true when you or a loved one needs to find the best possible memory care community.
Having to make preparations for memory care can have a profound impact on daily life. Even though this may feel like a major change from your “regular” life, remember that the proper memory care community can help you reclaim your independence in a whole new way.
Questions to Ask a Memory Care Community
- Is there a medical director on staff?
Where does responsibility for the residents’ psychological and physiological health lie?
For the sake of their physical, mental, and emotional well-being, a community’s management team must reflect that commitment. Make sure there is a doctor deployed there.
- Are there registered nurses on staff and are they available 24/7?
In a high-quality memory care community, you can expect to find at least one registered nurse. Throughout the day, they monitor the condition of the resident and respond appropriately to any medical or physical concerns that may develop. The skilled nurses working at these communities are accountable to the primary care physicians in the surrounding area.
By having the same caregivers look after the same residents over time, trust is established, and individualized care can be provided. In an ideal setting, there would always be a doctor on call.
- What are the types of medical services offered?
On-site medical services can diagnose and treat the vast majority of residents’ medical requirements, such as:
- Home Health
- PT/OT/SP Therapy
This not only speeds up treatment, but also avoids the potential for miscommunication that might arise when a resident’s physical location or doctor’s appointment is changed.
- What type of training do team members undergo?
Team members providing care for those with dementia should undergo annual refresher courses focused on the latest innovations in the field. It is important to keep track of the courses and seminars attended for continuing education.
- What is the worker to resident ratio?
Safe and healthy living conditions for those with dementia are best achieved by maintaining as low a worker-to-resident ratio as possible. A worker-to-resident ratio of 1:6 is considered ideal.
Additionally, time and time again, pertinent research has demonstrated that memory care communities with full-time nurses and direct care with in-house nursing personnel can directly impact resident outcomes.
- What are the memory care policies and fees we need to know about?
- If my loved one requires intensive care, can they stay here till the end of life, or would they have to move?
- When should I go to the emergency room, and what is the procedure?
- Does a caregiver accompany the resident to the emergency room?
- How does one go about informing close relatives?
- Does the monthly charge cover everything, or are there hidden expenses for things like television, phone, prescription, different care tiers, events, and transportation?
- My loved one may need outside rehabilitation. May they come back to the community?
- When my loved one loses the ability to walk, what will happen to them?