When a loved one moves into an assisted living or memory care, family members do not stop being caregivers. Now instead of being the caregiver that performs the caregiving you are the caregiver that watches over the cares being provided. Communication is key. Here are some tips to help ensure that all goes smoothly.
Before your loved one moves in, make sure you:
- Understand and agree with all of the cares that are to be provided.
- Understand your rights to see your loved one’s records.
- Understand what regular communications you should be receiving.
- Understand how you communicate concerns about your loved one’s care.
- Understand how complaints are handled and escalated if you need to.
- Understand how medications are managed, dispensed and recorded.
After your loved one moves in, be observant and ask questions if you notice:
- Changes in behavior.
- Clothes that aren’t clean or aren’t theirs.
- Other items in their room that aren’t theirs or are missing.
- Personal care issues such as un-brushed teeth or hair, body odor or bruises.
- Your loved one pulling away or unusually reticent around staff.
Seeing any of these signs does not necessarily mean there is cause for concern, but they should be asked about. If these types of issues are coming up regularly a larger discussion may be needed.
That greatest thing to remember is to keep the communication going early and often.