Choosing the right nursing home or other long-term care facility for your elderly parent or other aged loved one is never a simple task. The complexity of this mission only increases when your loved one has some condition that requires medication and/or specialized treatment. While some nursing homes may be equipped to adequately address the physical ailments and infirmities, it is less common to find a facility that is able to handle your loved one’s mental condition (such as dementia or bipolar disorder).
The Importance of Proper Care for Your Loved One’s Mental Conditions
When discussing the appropriate care that your loved one deserves at a nursing home, much attention is paid to the physical care your loved one receives: food, clothing, shelter, and appropriate medical care for injuries and infirmities. However, a person with a mental infirmity or mental condition can suffer as much anguish and pain as a person with a physical condition if that mental condition or impairment is not adequately addressed. What is more, an untreated mental condition can make the individual dangerous to other nursing home residents and/or staff.
What to Look for in a Nursing Home or Care Facility
When you are searching for an appropriate nursing home or long-term care facility for your loved one and your loved one has one or more mental conditions that need attention and care, look for the following:
- Does the nursing home or facility have a psychiatrist on staff or does the home contract with a psychiatrist? A psychiatrist is capable of monitoring your loved one’s mental health-related medications and adjusting these medications as necessary. A facility that does not (at least) contract with a psychiatrist may not be appropriate for your loved one.
- What training does the facility provide to its staff regarding caring for individuals with mental illnesses and impairments? For a nursing home to be able to properly care for someone with a mental condition, the staff of the facility must know how to properly approach and provide care to a resident who is experiencing a mental crisis. Staff that is not properly trained on how to deescalate a situation involving a resident in crisis may cause unnecessary harm to the resident and/or other residents of the facility.
- What reputation does the facility have amongst other mental health professionals in the community? If other psychologists, psychiatrists, mental health aids, and/or others have a negative opinion about the quality of care provided by a certain facility, then you may wish to reconsider whether to place your loved one in such a facility.
How Case Barnett Law Can Help
If a nursing facility agrees to accept your loved one as a resident, that nursing home owes your loved one a duty to provide appropriate care for his or her physical and/or mental conditions and impairments. When the facility fails to do so, count on Case Barnett Law – your Orange County elder abuse attorneys – to help you obtain justice for your loved one. Call us at (949) 861-2990, or contact us online for prompt and professional legal assistance.