Choosing a nursing home is a decision like no other. You’re selecting a new home for someone you love and a place from where they may never return. It’s the toughest decision you may make. So, it’s important to know what questions to ask and what answers to expect. Many nursing homes may appear to be the same, but you will sometimes notice dramatic differences if you examine each one carefully.
If I’m choosing a nursing home, what’s most important?
Choosing a nursing home requires time, research and care. When choosing a nursing home, you have to consider many factors. Most importantly, you should be your loved one’s own patient advocate. Ask tough questions and demand specific answers. Unfortunately, despite the best research, residents are sometimes mistreated or neglected even in a good nursing home. New Jersey malpractice attorneys have seen too many of these cases before.
When choosing a nursing home, what information can help me?
A recent study looked at roughly 16,000 rated nursing homes in the U.S. Here are the good results:
• Homes with high nurse to patient ratios generally received strong ratings. In other words, the more caretakers the better. Be sure to ask about the nurse to patient ratio, not just the patient to staff ratio.
• Homes in the northeast were rated higher than homes in other regions. This is good news if you live here in the northeast but not so good if you live elsewhere.
• More than 2 million Americans return home after staying in a nursing home for fewer than three months. So, a nursing home stay does not have to be a life sentence.
Here are the bad results:
• Homes run by for-profit corporations generally receive lower ratings than homes run by nonprofit corporations. This should not surprise you. Sadly, many nursing homes put profit over people.
• Homes with more than 100 beds generally received lower ratings. Again, no surprise there. Fewer patients versus more caretakers is always better than the other way around.
• More than 500,000 Americans die in nursing homes each year — that’s a tough statistic to swallow.
If the worst should happen to your loved one in a nursing home, though we hope it never does, please contact a certified civil trial lawyer immediately.
The Mininno Law Office is always available to help. If you have questions about nursing homes, our New Jersey nursing home abuse lawyers can answer them for you.