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Aside from the state and federal requirements in place for all long-term care facilities, an Alzheimer's facility does not require any additional licensing. It is up to the person looking for an Alzheimer's facility to decide if the center offers the services required by the Alzheimer's patient. The patient's primary care physician, local agencies related to aging, and Alzheimer's family support groups are all good starting places when looking for an Alzheimer's care facility.
Alzheimer's disease is a progressive illness, and patients that are afflicted typically require 24 hour care as the disease advances. Choosing a facility that meets the needs of the patient now, and in the future, helps ease the stress of moving later on. Find out what level of supervision the care center offers. Round the clock care by medical professionals that work full-time for the facility is better than partial care by aides with little healthcare experience.
Location is an important consideration when choosing an Alzheimer's facility. Regular visits by family members are important to ensure that the patient is receiving adequate care. It may be necessary for the patient to relocate to another area in order to be closer to family members.
Cost is without a doubt an important factor when deciding on an Alzheimer's facility. Medicare may pay part or all of the expenses related to long-term care. How much Medicare pays depends on a variety of factors, including the condition of the patient, the services offered at the care facility, and the patient's ability to pay. There are also private nursing home insurance policies available. It is important to determine the monthly cost of the facility after Medicare and any other available insurance, and determine if the family can bear the cost.
Once you have a list of potential care facilities, visit to decide which Alzheimer's facility best meets the needs of the patient. Look for a facility that has a peaceful atmosphere. People with Alzheimer's are often distraught and may moan or sound like they are in pain; prolonged periods of this behavior, however, may be an indication of inadequate supervision.
Watch the interaction between patients and caregivers. The caregivers should provide one on one attention to each individual, interacting with them as each patient's condition allows. Caregivers should help patient's with their meals and pay attention to any individual who does not appear to be eating.
Inspect the Alzheimer's facilities. Look for a numbered keypad to prevent residents from leaving the building. Security should be a priority in Alzheimer's facilities, as many of those afflicted by the illness are prone to wandering.