Care Community Comparison Checklist
You want to find the best care community for your loved one. The comparison checklist will assist you in comparing care communities and making the best decision.
Placing a loved one in a care community is one of the most difficult tasks a family member ever faces. But when it becomes necessary, prospective residents and their families should have the best information possible to make this decision.
To make the best decision, you should first speak with people you can trust and who may be able to provide valuable information about a particular facility, as well as the needs of the potential resident. Such people include family, friends, and health professionals.
Second, begin gathering basic information about the senior care communities you are considering. Keep in mind that location is important. Choosing a care community located close to family and friends will allow more time for visiting.
It is also important that you understand how financing will be handled for a stay at each care community.
Next, visiting the care community is one of the most important steps in the selection process, as it will allow you to comparison shop using the checklist we have provided. This will actually allow you to talk with the staff and the residents who receive care and live at the care community and keep a record of their answers. As you conduct your interviews, be sure to respect resident privacy. You may visit a care community during a scheduled tour, or you may also visit the care community unannounced.
Finally, let your senses guide you through your tour—sight, smell, touch, sound and taste—are all important factors. Use this checklist as a guide to note specific things about each care community you visit. Then you will have the information that will help you make an informed and best decision for your loved one, and you.
|Is the care community close to family and friends for visitation?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|What is the occupancy rate?|
|Is the care community certified by Medicare and Medicaid?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are visiting hours convenient for residents and visitors?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Is the care community near a hospital that serves its residents?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|What is the deficiency rating of the care community?|
|Is a thoughtful approach used in selecting roommates?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are physical, occupational and speech therapies available?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|What is the staff-to-resident ratio?|
|Are care plan meetings held at times that are convenient for residents and family members to attend?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are families invited to participate in the plan of care?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are residents well-groomed?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Does the care community provide the special service you may need? (dementia, behavior, ventilator, wound care, etc.)||Yes / No||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|How many residents share a bathroom?|
|Can residents bring personal belongings from home?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are the rooms clean?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are the rooms furnished?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Does each resident have storage space in his or her room?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Can call lights be reached by each resident?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Is the care community odor-free?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Does the care community appear clean and well-kept?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are exits clearly marked?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are noise levels in the dining room and other common areas comfortable?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are there quiet areas where residents can visit with family and friends?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|menus and food|
|Do residents have a choice of food items at each meal?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are nutritious snacks available?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Is resident assistance available during mealtimes if needed?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Does a dietitian plan menus for residents on special diets?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Can residents eat in their rooms if they so choose?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are rooms available for resident activities?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Is there a variety of activities available for residents?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Are outdoor areas available for residents’ use?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Does the relationship between the staff and the residents appear to be warm, polite and respectful?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Does the staff knock on the door before entering a resident’s room and refer to the residents by name?||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Is there a care provider available to coordinate personal needs? (errands, physician appointments, etc.)||Yes||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|Is there significant turnover in the facility care staff?||No||Yes / No||Yes / No|
|What is the rate?|
|What services does it cover?|