Watching a loved one age can be so difficult when they reach a point where their physical disability, cognitive impairment or frailty make independent living unsafe or when the extent of these problems make care at home or with a relative impossible. At that point, many people do not know where to turn for information and advice about how to find safe, quality long-term care placement, such as in a nursing home or an assisted living facility.
At our law firm, we have years of experience counseling elderly clients and their family members as well as guardians about long-term care planning and placement. We have amassed significant knowledge about the resources in Colorado and how to discern the quality of care.
Some recommendations for gathering information include:
- Reach out to those in your circle for information they may have about particular facilities – positive or negative – from friends and relatives, doctors and your loved one’s social worker, if they have one
- Check state and federal public records of facility inspections and reports of and citations for abuse and neglect
- Tour potential facilities and interview management
- Search the internet for facilities and their corporate ownership to uncover articles about problems or lawsuits
When you take tours, ask probing questions of your tour guides and management, both preplanned questions and those regarding topics that occur to you as you observe the staff and conditions.
Things to ask about and to observe:
- Problems with cleanliness or odors
- Resident appearance, including hygiene and grooming
- Interactions between residents and staff
- Staff turnover rate
- Available references from family members of residents
- Residents left unattended or alone
(The state of Colorado provides information about nursing homes in the state as well as resources that are helpful in choosing one here. Links from this page lead to additional relevant information.)