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Finding a decent Care Home!?!

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gundogundo Forumite
204 posts
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I'm hoping that someone can please help me as I'm absolutely desperate.

My father has Alzheimers and my Mum is no longer coping that well at home, so much so that my Dad was given an emergency placement at a local care home. It seems an ok place but to be quite honest, old and bit tatty.

How do I go about finding somewhere better for him with modern amenties and good care? Also how do I ensure that things are flexible so that at a later date my Dad could come home and stay with Mum if he wanted to?

I left him at the care home tonight and afterwards driving home I felt absolutely awful leaving him there. It's really not that nice a place and I'd very much like to find him something nicer.

Your help or insight would be much appreciated.

By the way the area is roughly Southampton (just north in actual fact).
Trying hard to be a good moneysaver.

Replies

  • purple12purple12 Forumite
    301 posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
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    Just a couple of suggestions - on the basis that I don't know your local area at all.
    https://www.bettercaring.com has a useful list of all care homes. Of course, it won't tell you the good from the bad but at least will locate local ones to you. Also, i'd recommend you use https://www.csci.gov.uk and go to the 'find a care home' link.
    There you will be able to find the latest inspection reports of the relevant homes. They can be very illuminating.

    To be honest (I'm a social worker and I work with older people so have to make quite a lot of placements in residential/nursing homes), shabby decor can sometimes provide the best quality of care and sometimes the beautiful new and sparkly homes can provide an appalling level of care - it isn't always appearances that indicate level and quality of care.
    I've come across many private and very beautiful looking care homes where I wouldn't dream of placing anyone due to the attitude of the staff and a few 'shabby looking' homes with exceptional standards of care.

    One thing I always ask when I am trying to establish the quality of a care home is how long the current staff have been in post. A happy and consistent staff team, will usually indicate a good standard of care. Also, better paid, regular staff (indicated by low staff turnover usually) means a more caring approach.
    Any home should allow your Dad to come home at any point as and when necessary. That is a part of their registration and absolutely necessary.

    I make emergency placements quite a lot and often we are restricted by availability so they often wouldn't be the perfect place for long term care but finance is another aspect (horrible to mention but these homes are expensive).

    Local authorities are restricted by cost but if you are making a private placement they the world is your oyster.. however, I would go back and emphasis private and expensive-looking doesn't always mean best standard of care.
  • tobyjugtobyjug Forumite
    291 posts
    I completly agree with purple12, especially the bit about staff retainment. The most important thing is the attitude of the carers as they have the direct contact and are giving the care. I have just finished working for my local trust going into nursing homes and undertaking assessments.
    It should be cleanliness rather than decor that you should be looking for with good quality varied diet and a safe stimulating environment. Some of the best care homes in our area were in older buildings which often don't compare to newly built homes.

    Don't feel intimidated go and ask to have a look around, discuss the home with anybody around. There are very few good quality homes suitable for a supporting Alzeimers in each area. The good ones never have any beds and you have a waiting list. If a home has a lot of empty beds then it might say something about that home. Your GP may know of different homes reputation.

    hope you manage to find a suitable place....
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