At a time when people are living longer than ever before, choosing the best place to spend those golden years is an increasingly important decision.
More than a quarter of million over 65 year olds were living in care homes in England and Wales in 2011.
They are places that can provide all those home comforts for people who may not be able to live independently, alongside the security of nursing help.
Many also specialise in supporting residents with particular needs, including those with dementia.
But if you think you know what a care home looks like, think again.
Chaucer House Care Home in Canterbury for instance boasts luxurious hotel-style décor, a roof top terrace, and even a spa – and has just been awarded the top rating from the Care and Quality Commission.
So, what makes a care home outstanding, and what are the signs to look for?
The best care homes can be like families, in that they help, support and take care of each other. It is important to be able to build strong relationships with staff and other residents.
One size doesn’t fit all. Care should be tailored to each individual, and they should be able to work in conjunction with professionals to determine what’s right for them.
The best homes will have enthusiastic, dedicated staff, willing to go that extra mile.
The value of others
Loneliness can be a major problem for older people, but something that opportunities for regular social interaction can alleviate.
New practices are constantly being pioneered, particularly developments in care for those with dementia. Look for somewhere that places value on innovation and looks to adapt to new ways of working.
It’s never too late to learn a new skill or develop an interest. Make sure there’s opportunity to pursue hobbies.
Privacy is important for those needing a bit of extra help. Feeling comfortable and respected is of utmost importance.
A home may have many of the services that would be provided in the community. But it's important to keep those links alive to ensure residents can still take part in community life.
For more details on Chaucer House Care Home click here