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Customizable checklist for finding an Alzheimer's Care home - SeniorHousingNet
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e.g. "Chicago, IL", "02134"
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Is an Alzheimer's Care Community right for you or your loved one?

Below are some considerations that you should consider when choosing an Alzheimer's Care Community. Please print out this guide to take with you when you visit.

What to look for when visiting an Alzheimer's Care Community

The following is a service checklist to help guide you. Determine whether each service is included in the fees or is available for an additional charge.
Good status with the state licensing agency Beauty/barber shop
Ability to accommodate later stages of Alzheimer's Emergency call system
Staff specially trained in Alzheimer's care Fire sprinklers and smoke alarms
Dementia/memory loss program Units convenient to dining room
Alarmed exterior / interior doors Private full bathrooms
24-hour nursing staff Step-in showers
Enclosed patios Handicapped access
Accommodation for "wanderers" Sufficient closet/storage and living space
Residential "look and feel" Individually controlled thermostat
Quality meals and dining service Strong management track record
Varying menu Handrails in hallways
Accommodation of special dietary needs Friendly, cheerful staff
Clean dining area Sufficient staff-to-resident ratio
Elevator Guest accommodations

Assessing an Alzheimer's Care residence as you tour the facility:

As you arrive at the residence, do you like the location and outward appearance of the residence?
As you enter the lobby and tour the residence, is the decor attractive and home-like?
Did you and your potential resident both receive a warm greeting from staff welcoming you to the residence?
Does the administrator/staff call residents by name and interact warmly with them as you tour the residence?
Do residents socialize with each other and appear happy and comfortable?
Are you able to talk with residents about how they like the residence and staff?
Do the residents seem to be appropriate housemates for your loved one?
Are staff appropriately dressed, personable and outgoing?
Are the staff members that you pass during your tour friendly to you?
Are visits with the resident welcome at any time?

Is the community well-designed for resident's needs:

Is the floor plan easy to follow?
Is there a walking path (indoor or outdoor) to accommodate those who wander?
Are doorways, hallways and rooms accommodating to wheel chairs and walkers?
Are elevators available for those unable to use stairways?
Are hand rails available to aid in walking?
Are cupboards and shelves easy to reach?
Are doors of a non-skid material and carpets firm to ease walking?
Does the residence have good natural and artificial lighting?

Is the residence clean, free of odors and appropriately heated/cooled?
Does the residence meet local and/or state licensing requirements?


 


Needs assessments, contracts, costs & finances

Is there a written plan for the care of each resident?
What is the procedure for assessing a potential resident's need for services and are those needs reassessed periodically?
Can a resident be discharged for refusing to comply with a care plan?
When may a contract be terminated and what are refund policies?
Are there any government, private or corporate programs available to help cover the cost of services to the resident?
Is a contractual agreement available to include accommodations, personal care, health care and supportive services?
Are additional services available if the resident's needs changes?
Are there different costs for various levels or categories of services?
How do you pay for additional services such as nursing care when needed on a temporary basis?
What are the billing, payment and credit policies?
May a resident handle their own finances with staff assistance if able or should a family member or outside party be designated to do so?
What is the policy on insurance and personal property?
Is staff available to meet scheduled and unscheduled needs?


Needs assessments, contracts, costs & finances

What is the residence policy regarding storage of medication, assistance with medications, training and supervision of staff and record keeping? __________________________________
Is self-administration of medication allowed?
Who coordinates home care visits from a nurse, physical therapist, occupational therapist, etc. if needed? __________________________________
Are staff available to assist residents who experience memory, orientation, or judgment losses?
Does a physician or nurse, visit the resident regularly to provide medical checkups?
What is the procedure for responding to a resident's medical emergency? __________________________________


Services

Is staff available to provide 24-hour assistance with activities of daily living (ADL) if needed? ADLs include:
Dressing Using the telephone
Eating Shopping
Mobility Laundry
Hygiene and grooming Housekeeping in unit
Bathing, toileting and incontinence Transportation to doctor, hairdresser, activities, etc.


 


Features of individual apartments

Are different sizes and types of units available?
Are units for single and double occupancy available?
Do residents have their own lockable doors?
Is a 24-hour emergency response systems accessible from the unit?
Are bathrooms private with handicapped accommodations to accommodate wheelchairs and walkers?
Are residents able to bring their own furnishings for their unit and what may they bring? __________________________________
Do all units have a telephone and cable TV and how is billing handled? __________________________________
Is a kitchen area/unit provided with refrigerator, sink, microwave (any heated cooking elements such as stoves should be disconnected or removed)?
May residents keep food in their units?
May residents smoke in their units? In public spaces? __________________________________


Social and recreational activities

Is there evidence of an organized activities program, such as a posted daily schedule, events in progress, reading materials, visitors, etc?
Do residents participate in the neighboring community?
Do volunteers, including family members, come into the residence to help with or conduct programs?
Does the residence require residents to undertake any chores or perform specific activities that benefit all residents?
Are residents' pets allowed in the residence? Who is responsible for their care? __________________________________
Does the residence have its own pets?


Food Service

Does the residence provide three nutritionally balanced meals a day, seven days a week?
Are snacks available?
May a resident request special foods?
Are common dining areas available?
May residents eat meals in their units?
May meals be provided at a time a resident would like or are there set times for meals? __________________________________
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