Things to Observe While Interviewing Alzheimers Facilities
The onset of Alzheimers can be troubling, to say the least. It is often combined with confusion and anxiety about what the disease will mean for the individual with Alzheimers as well as those who live with, around, or work with the individual. The key is to remember that this disease can be managed. There’s hope. With the right steps taken, an Alzheimers diagnosis is definitely not the end of a happy, productive life. On the contrary, it can be a beginning to a life where specific care is given to make things easier and more carefree than before. The reality is that often Alzheimers has been affecting the quality of life of the individual for some years. It could be that the person was in denial, or it could be that those who love him or her have been hoping it was something else. But taking a proactive stance when it comes to dealing with Alzheimers can help improve the quality of life—of everyone–dramatically. Disease management can be best performed by a qualified dementia care facility. Here are some things to look for when interviewing different facilities in the area.
Individualized Care Plans
No two cases of Alzheimers are alike. Due to a variety of factors, some of them genetic, some of them environmental, Alzheimers affects everyone differently. For this reason, it is crucial that the care facility has plans that are custom designed to fit the needs of each individual patient. If a facility provides excellent care plans for other diseases, that doesn’t necessarily mean they will be adept at providing proper care for Alzheimer’s. For example, if they have excellent multiple sclerosis care plans or Parkinsons care plans, that is certainly a plus, but you have to make sure the plans to care for patients with Alzheimers are as effective. Don’t be afraid to ask pointed questions about the quality of the care plans you need.
As you talk to the prospective facility, ask the right questions regarding the personalization of the plans. For example, if someone starts to make improvement, how is the approach adjusted so that the improvement is factored in. Also, how is someone monitored during the treatment process? And if their condition changes, how are the changes verified, and how do the observations made affect future treatment decisions? Also, when you talk to the facility, bring information regarding your loved one with you. Ask questions that pertain to their situation in particular, not just people in general. Talk openly about our desire to have the care of your loved one properly personalized. You will learn a lot in this process, so don’t forget to take notes, or bring someone who can serve as the note taker.
A Variety of Activities
Alzheimers can be combatted with healthy activities performed on a daily basis. While most facilities will understand this concept, it’s easy for even the best intentioned facilities to get into a rut when it comes to the activities offered. This may be due to budgetary restrictions, but more often it’s simply due to a lack of creative thinking. Ask about the different activities involved in the treatment palns. Ask to see a schedule, and take a look around to see if it is being implemented. Are people being parked in front of a TV for hours and hours on end? Are there different activities happening simultaneously with different cohorts of patients? Take a look around and be observant. If you see something troubling or something you have a hard time understanding, ask questions. Give the facility a chance to address your concerns.
Pay Attention to How People Are Treated
Respect is the kind of thing that cannot be put into a schedule, treatment plan or prescription, but it will go a long way towards making the treatment effective. As you tour a facility, observe how the patients are treated. Look at the body language of the staff as well as the tone they use when talking to people. How do the staff look? Are they being treated with respect by management? Also, how are you treated, particularly as you ask questions?
Taking close notes and being proactive with your questions can help set your mind at ease and begin a new, productive process of handling Alzheimer’s