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What should I know about a facility's staff before choosing a nursing home?

Anthony Cirillo
Geriatric Medicine

Before choosing a care facility find out about staffing:

  • How many aides per patient are there?
  • How many licensed practical nurses (LPN's) and registered nurses (RN's) per patient are there?
  • How long has staff been on board?
  • What is the turnover rate?
  • Are temporary people used?
  • Is management stable?
  • Is management experienced in long-term care?
  • Are there geriatric nurse specialists and others specially trained to care for older adults?
  • Does a facility conduct criminal background checks?
  • What are the responsibilities of individual staff members?
  • Who supervises them?
  • What is the duration and frequency of services? Experts say to only consider a home that is providing at least two hours of direct care to the resident a day.
  • Find out how the staff is treated. Are they adequately trained? How are they valued and recognized?
  • Observe how the staff interacts with residents.

Facilities with staff that have been in place a long time are facilities that provide better care because they have experience. The facility must be treating its employees with respect if they stay.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.