Care Home Checklist for Visiting a Care Home

Choosing a care home for a family member, a close friend or perhaps yourself is a very important decision. Ellen Fay Solicitors in Preston have many years experience of helping private individuals keep their independence as well as deal with issues around long term care in their later years.

Making the right decision is not always easy, so based on our extensive experience we’ve created this care home checklist (in two parts) to help you. These include:

Part 1 (this page)
1. Accessibility
2. Accommodation
3. Care
4. Catering
5. Management

Part 2 (Contact Ellen Fay Solicitors to receive the full Care Home Checklist)
6. Important questions to ask about finances
7. How the Home’s Policies and Procedures affect you
8. What you need to know about the other Residents
9. Essential questions about Care Home Staff
10. Understanding a Home’s Terms and Conditions

1. Accessibility

• Are there any problems with the location of the home?  For example:-
– Busy roads
– Public transport
– How convenient is it for the shops, Post Office etc.

• How easy is it to enter, leave and move about inside the home?

• What difficulties will people who want to visit you encounter?  For example:-
– Getting there
– Parking
– Seeing you in private
– Any restrictions on visiting hours

2. Accommodation

• What’s your overall impression of the building?
– Is it noisy, clean, well maintained?
– What is the temperature like?
– Is it comfortable and inviting?

• How will you be able to make use of the garden?

• What do you think of the bedroom?
– Is it too big or too small?
– Do you have to share the room?
– Can you personalise it?
– What facilities does it have?
– Are there any en-suite facilities?
– Is there enough cupboard space for all of your clothes and personal belongings?
– Is the bed comfortable?
– What is the view like?
– Will you have a key?
– Do the staff knock on the door before entering?

• How easy will it be to get to the bathroom/toilet?
– What aids are there?
– How many other people use it?
– How often is it cleaned?

• What is the lounge like?
– Is it comfortable, warm, noisy?
– Who decides what to watch on TV?
– Are people allowed to smoke?

• What are the arrangements for the dining room?
– Can you sit on your own?
– Do people always sit at the same table?
– Is the kitchen spotlessly clean?
– Is it used just for preparing meals, or are the residents’ clothes and bed linen washed there too?

• How easy will it be to manoeuvre the stairs and corridors?
– Is there a lift?
– Are there hand rails?

• If there isn’t a phone in your room, what arrangements are there for you to make and receive calls, and at what rate are the calls charged?
– Will you be overheard?
– How will you pay for the calls you make?

• What fire safety precautions are there?
– Fire doors, alarms, smoke detectors, extinguishers, a fire escape.

• What security arrangements are there?

3. Care

• Does each resident have an individual care plan?
• Will you be able to remain in the home if your health deteriorates?
• Can you retain your own GP?
• How often is the home visited by a physiotherapist, chiropodist, hair dresser, etc?
• Are there set routines for when residents get up and go to bed?
• What are the laundry arrangements?
• Who looks after your drugs and medicines?
• What social activities and entertainments are provided for residents?
• Does the home have its own transport?

4. Catering

• What are the mealtimes?
– Are they rigid or flexible?

• Is there a menu?
– Is there much choice?
– How often is the same menu repeated?
– Do residents have any say in planning or preparing meals?

• Is the diet appetising and well balanced?
• Can you have a snack between meals?
• What happens if you fancy a cup of tea or coffee at any time?
• Can you have your meals in your own room if you wish?
• Can visitors join you for a meal?

5. Management

• Is the home registered to provide personal care or nursing care or both?
• Will you have to leave if you require nursing care or you develop dementia?
• Who owns the home? o What qualifications and experience do they have?
– Do they plan to sell up or retire in the foreseeable future?
– Will they let you see a copy of the latest inspection report?
– Will you be able to get on with the owner or manager?

To receive the full Care Home Checklist, please make your request via our Contact Us page.

For further information please contact Ellen Fay Solicitors in Preston, Lancashire on 01772 722373.