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Questions to Ask When Touring a Memory Care Community

by tiffanysprings

Questions to Ask When Touring a Memory Care Community

Searching for a memory care community for your loved one can be an emotional time. Being prepared with questions helps alleviate the stress.

 

WELLNESS

Be clear about the level of care and supervision your loved one will need. Describe specific behaviors like agitation, wandering, aggression, etc., and find out how staff assists in those situations.

Questions to ask
  • Who administers medications and how are those records kept?
  • How are family members and primary physicians involved in setting up a care plan?
  • If my loved one requires a long-term stay in a hospital or rehabilitation facility, do you hold the apartment?
  • Do you provide transportation to doctors’ appointments and medical centers?
  • Is there end-of-life hospice care?

Dining & Nutrition

Visit near a mealtime so you can sample the food and observe the atmosphere.

Questions to ask
  • How much of your food is freshly prepared on the premises? How much is shipped in frozen?
  • What provisions do you make for therapeutic diets?
  • What meals are included in monthly rent?
  • If my loved one is unable to eat in the dining room, do you have room service?
  • Are snacks provided?
  • How is nutrition monitored?
  • How are residents assisted if they’re unable to eat?

 

Costs

Everything about policies and procedures should be well documented. Ask for copies.

Can you give me a copy of your lease contract that details all fees, rules, and regulations? Questions to ask
  • What services are considered extra? How are they billed?
  • What fees do you charge?
  • Do you participate in Medicare, Medicaid, VA Aid and Assistance, long-term care insurance, or any other payment program?
  • How do you handle instances when a resident is either late or unable to pay?
  • What circumstances would force a resident to move out?
  • If it is a pet-friendly community: Is there a pet fee?

 

Staff

Does the staff seem friendly? Are they interacting with residents in an empathetic way?

Questions to ask
  • What medical personnel do you have on staff? What hours are they here?
  • How is your staff trained to deal with medical emergencies?
  • What dementia training and background checks are required of staff?
  • What is your staff-to-resident ratio?
  • What do you do if a staff person takes the day off?
  • Do you offer physical therapy, occupational therapy, or speech therapy?

 

Amenities

Are all areas maintained and clean? Are there soothing colors and natural light? Does the building smell pleasant throughout? Are there landmarks or sufficient signage that would help residents navigate?

Questions to ask
  • Are apartments furnished or can residents bring their own furniture?
  • Is there maintenance staff onsite at all times?

Activities

Observe various activities. Are they well attended? Take home a copy of the event calendar.

Questions to ask
  • Are residents grouped by cognitive abilities?
  • How do you deal with residents who do not want to participate?
  • Does the programming director have experience working with memory care residents?
  • How often are the activities changed?

 

Security

Ask to see the emergency response system. Are the courtyards secured? Emergency exits clearly marked? Overhead sprinklers? Smoke detectors? Tripping hazards?

Questions to ask
  • How are residents monitored?
  • Is the front desk manned at all times?
  • How are visitors able to enter after hours?
  • May I have a copy of your documented emergency procedures?

Residents

Do the current residents look happy, cared for, and groomed?

Questions to ask
  • How do you onboard new residents?
  • How are disputes resolved?
  • How much input do family members have about programs, activities, and menus?
  • What are the visiting hours?

 

Take as much time as you need on your tour and take plenty of notes. Invite another family member or trusted friend to go with you so you can compare thoughts. Pick various times of day to schedule a second or even a third visit before making your final decision. Before you leave, ask to see the latest state survey and inspection report, the community’s Special Care Unit Disclosure form, and a copy of the lease.

 

We invite you to come tour our Tiffany Springs memory care community. We’d love for you to see all Tiffany Springs Senior Living Community has to offer. Contact us today.