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A Guide to Finding the Right Mesa Arizona Assisted Living Center

Jul 31, 2008
When caring for an elderly loved one becomes too much, a Mesa Arizona assisted living center can relieve that burden without the need for guilt, as the staff at assisted living centers are medically trained and can accommodate better around the clock care than you might be able to offer.

Having said that, not just any Mesa Arizona assisted living center will do for your loved one. Shop around. Look carefully at all the feasible options before selecting an assisted living facility. Visit more than one. Observe staff members on the job and look for facilities with staff members treat residents with respect and are not condescending. Make sure you visit during busy evening and morning hours to make sure there are enough caregivers to help.

Always inquire about licensing and certification before selecting a Mesa Arizona assisted living center. If a particular facility has a long-standing pattern of deficiencies, especially involving medication errors or neglect, look for another. Keep in mind that most assisted living homes are cited for minor problems.

Ask to read a copy of the resident agreement or facility contract. It's a legal document that spells out your obligations and the responsibilities of the facility. Many facilities charge extra for things like laundry service, haircuts, incontinence products and dispensing medication. There will likely be additional fees as your family member's needs increase, so be aware of what they are.

Look over a sample meal menu at the Mesa Arizona assisted living center. Meal times are typically a highlight for residents, so look for a varied menu. Find out if there a set mealtime or if residents are free to choose when to eat. Try to have lunch at the facility with your loved one and sample the food yourself to ensure that it is satisfactory.

Review a copy of scheduled activities. Hopefully they reflect a wide range of interests and are varied so residents of all ability levels can participate.
Remember to take into consideration the proximity of the Mesa Arizona assisted living center to family and friends. The closer, the better. If you or friends can visit, your family member will not only have more companionship, but will have the added protection of visitors who can monitor how he or she is being treated.

Ensure that the grounds of any potential facility are safe and easy to navigate. The building should have handrails, elevators and doors wide enough for wheelchairs. If your loved one had dementia it is important to check to see if there are alarms on doors leading outside to prevent residents from wandering away unnoticed.

Find out about the staff, especially the person who dispenses medication. Find out how many hours of training have they had. Find out if the medication policy at the Mesa Arizona assisted living center allows residents to self-administer medication with doctor approval.

Inquire about the staff turnover rate. A good turnover rate is in the single digits, although many homes have higher rates. If the turnover rate is higher, ask why, and consider other options.

Once you've selected a Mesa Arizona assisted living center it is difficult and can be traumatic to move your loved one, so it is important to find out if the facility can accommodate his or her needs should your loved one become more disabled. Be wary of a facility that promises it can care for anyone, regardless of condition. Unless it is also certified as a nursing home, it may not be able to care for residents who need lots of hands-on nursing care.

Ask for the medical conditions under which the facility could require a resident to move out and how much advance notice would be given.

Good luck in finding the right assisted living center for your loved one. And remember, regardless of how well the facility is run, nothing compensates for your continued visits and companionship to keep your loved one happy and feeling loved and appreciated.
About the Author
Courtyard Towers of Mesa (http://courtyardtowersarizona.com/) is a beautiful Mesa Arizona assisted living center you can trust with the care of your elderly loved one. Art Gibb is a freelance writer.
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