Finding a nursing home for a parent or loved one can be one of the hardest decisions in life. There are so many things to consider. How much will it cost? How did it do on its last inspection? Has anyone lodged a complaint against it? Most important of all, will your loved one receive good care there?
Planning can make the process easier. For example, try to visit at least three homes so you can make comparisons. Visits allow you to view the care yourself. If possible, ask the loved one who will be living in the nursing home and other family members to visit the nursing homes with you.
It's also important to remember that homes provide different levels of care depending upon a person's needs and illness. For instance, someone unable to bathe, dress or walk may need the high level of care offered in a skilled nursing home, whereas someone who fears falling and living alone may only need the minimal assistance offered in a residential care home.
The Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) provides the links below to guide you in the selection process. For instance, you'll learn the right questions to ask by clicking on "How to Select a Nursing Home." You can also learn how many residents, staff and deficiencies a home has, or if it participates in Medicare or Medicaid by clicking on "Nursing Home Compare." "Show-Me Long-Term Care" lets you view inspection results for Missouri's licensed facilities, but you'll need the home's name, zip code, or county to get started.
Finally, a person may be able to receive care and services in his or her own home rather than in a nursing home setting. The "Care Choices" link below lets you explore the alternatives.