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Choosing a Care Home

There are many different types of care homes ranging from homes which provide specialist nursing or dementia care to others which simply offer a safe and comfortable new home for people who may need a little assistance with daily life.

It is important to understand the type of care required, this may have been pre-determined following a needs assessment carried out by a professional such as a social worker, GP or nurse assessor. 

The next step is to consider the location, many residents will stay in the same area to maintain local family, friend and social community connections. Others chose to move to a location closer to family to make it easier for families to visit and offer additional support.

Once the type of care and location has been decided it is time to search for a home. There are local care directories available paper form available from GP surgeries or social services as well search engines such as google and a number of online companies such as

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) regulate all care homes in England and undertake regular inspections of all care homes to ensure they meet required standards. Care homes are obliged to display their rating in the home and on their website. Taking the time to read the reports can be helpful.

Once you have shortlisted a number of homes you should take the time to visit them, an appointment should not be required. When visiting the homes you need to take into consideration the environment and whether this will suit your loved one. More importantly it is an opportunity to meet the home manager, speak to the staff and residents and generally get a feel about the home. You should visit as often as it takes you to decide if it is a suitable home for your loved one, and if possible take your loved one to visit.

Once you have made a decision the home manager or a senior member of the team will undertake a pre admission care assessment to confirm the home and support the needs of your loved one. This assessment is also an opportunity to gain an understanding of your loved ones likes and dislikes, input from family and friends can help during this assessment.