Florida’s Long Term Care Ombudsman
Program at Ombudsman.MyFlorida.com/
ResidenceRights for more information.
FINDING A NURSING HOME:
Educate Yourself Early
Education is the key to making sure you
choose the nursing home that is best for
you or your loved one. Start the process
early by educating yourself as soon as it is
determined that a nursing facility is needed
and by consulting on key advisors that you
trust. Studies show that those who do their
due diligence will have an overall better nursing
home experience than those who do not.
There is a difference in the quality of care and
the services provided among nursing facilities.
Some are better than others.
What Care Services Do You Need?
The medical needs of nursing home residents
vary greatly between individuals. Likewise, the
nursing care services available vary greatly
between facilities. Although every nursing
home provides basic health care services, some
facilities serve special needs like wound care,
Alzheimer’s or the care of tracheotomies. Some
even have specialized medical equipment to
take care of patients on dialysis or ventilators.
If you are being discharged from a hospital, your
physician or discharge planner can provide you
with a list of nursing homes that can cover your
specific health care needs.
Call, Tour & Decide
Start by calling the facilities on your initial list.
Ask to set up a time that you can come by for
a visit and tour the facility. It is a good idea to
find homes close to the patient’s loved ones so
they are able to visit more frequently. Ask family
and friends for recommendations and whether
they have had any personal experience with any
of the homes on your list. From your initial list,
you will be able to narrow the field of choices
down to two or three that you would like to visit.
Touring the nursing home is perhaps the most
important determining factor when evaluating
a facility. Make sure you take along our Nursing
Home “Questions to Ask” Comparison Worksheet
or use our Nursing Home Quick Tips
List if time is short when touring the home you
are considering. Do more than just talk to the
administrator and the admissions director. Talk
to the care staff, if possible, while touring. Keep
your eyes open to both what you see and what
you don’t see happening during the tour. Even
though time is sometimes critically short for
selecting a nursing home, be selective.