Two years ago, I got the unwanted news that my dad needed to move to a place where he could get a higher level of care—the independent living community he had lived in for three years was no longer enough for his needs. He needed to move to an assisted living or memory care facility, and he needed to move quickly. Because of the deterioration in his health, he had developed a need for two person transfers (for instance, being moved from bed to a wheelchair).
I wanted to make sure that the transition would include his caregivers, who had been with him around the clock, and his two cats. I was determined to make sure he would get the best possible care for his needs and wishes—not just any place would do.
Unfortunately, I didn’t know much about retirement communities in my area, and I found myself suddenly needing to tour many of them to figure out which ones would work for Dad. I didn’t even know which retirement communities there were in my area and had absolutely no idea where to start. I quickly came to realize that I needed to look at cost, care, violation histories, what the residents think, their activities, what kind of food is served and things like whether a community is friendly to a single male. There are so many things that can happen when family isn’t there to directly oversee and manage care all the time. I needed someone to help me navigate the waters and decide exactly where he was going to go. In short, I needed a company like CarePatrol.
That’s what led me to become part of CarePatrol in 2013. I recognized the great need for assistance among those seeking to find a safe, appropriate place to live for themselves or a loved one. Trying to find the right choice for a retirement care community is absolutely daunting. There are over 350 communities in the CarePatrol of the Triangle territory alone. These facilities serve a wide variety of needs. Of those 350, about five were possible matches for Dad’s care needs and other requirements. Of those, only one had availability. I had to go fishing and hope to find the right community—it was very much like trying to drive a car down the highway while blindfolded.
These days, the CarePatrol of the Triangle team helps families navigate a wide variety of needs to find the right community. We know which communities have beds available, what the care and violation histories of the communities are, and we know how they treat their clients. We get to know the communities we work with as well as the families we help. That way, we can make recommendations that fit the family and meet their health, safety, and financial needs.
Once we’ve met with a family and performed an in-depth care discovery, we recommend three or four communities. Then we take the family on tours of those places. If they want to look at more communities, we will do that. It’s funny how families frequently come back to one of the first communities we’ve shown them. It’s not really surprising though—we are placement experts, and we really know the strengths and weaknesses of the different communities. We understand the personalities of each community, and have a good idea for where someone would be a good fit.
Once a family has chosen a particular community, we can help negotiate a contract and facilitate the moving process. We work as a guide and advocate to help the entire move go as smoothly as possible.
Once the move is complete, our work isn’t complete. We follow up with families to see how they’re doing. We make sure that clients get the service they need and are well taken care of. We care about them for life.