Rehab in the nursing home
January 18, 2009
Check it out.
There are many things that make up good care in nursing homes. It definitely is a team effort and it takes the whole team to make a really great one. Next to quality care by the nurses and certified nursing assistants (CNAs), is the quality of the rehab department.
When you are looking for a place to take dad, talk to the head of the rehab department. It’s OK to get the tour by the administrator or the admissions/marketing person, but talk to the rehab department head too. Take time to spend with them, ask for an appointment. Go look at the gym. Do your homework; get familiar with the terms and the goals of care for the condition he has. If dad is not currently receiving physical/speech/occupational therapy, ask what it would take for the department to get involved with dad’s care outside of an injury. Ask them what programs they have for residents who are not on what we called “skilled services.”
When it boils down to it, the level of care is pretty much the same wherever you go. You have the same type of care at all of the nursing homes. It’s the quality that makes the difference and don’t let the chandeliers and pretty carpet make your decision for you.
Checking out the rehab department is important whether or not dad got a hip replacement, knee surgery, etc. Nursing homes are now instituting what they call ‘nursing rehab’ programs. These programs are at no cost to the resident. They are not delivered by the skilled therapists, they are delivered by ‘restorative aids.’ These aids are CNAs who have special training by a skilled therapist. I’ve seen very good results with this program.
So even if dad has nothing from which to recover, find out what the nursing home offers to assist dad in maintaining the function he has now.