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Seniors and their families should apply good judgment in considering nursing home placement services

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By Hook Law Center

Nursing home placement services, which offer to help find the perfect housing for seniors, are a growing trend in elder care. These services are offered for no charge, and they claim to demystify the world of elder care facilities. However, seniors and their families should use good judgment in choosing a nursing home placement service.

Senior placement services are completely unregulated, and they do not require licensing or training. This means that anyone can start one, and that quality is not guaranteed. All nursing home placement services stay in business by working with a network of nursing homes,
assisted living facilities or retirement communities. These facilities pay a commission to the placement service when a senior moves in.

The quality of services offered by a nursing home placement service can vary widely. There are some national and franchise operations that work entirely over the phone or online. Often, the consultants at such companies have not actually been to the facilities they are recommending. These companies tend to simply provide a list of communities for the senior to visit.

There are some gems. Small, local companies are often home to experts in senior care who provide a more hands-on service. At these companies, consultants work with seniors in person, take seniors and their families on facility tours and have the expertise to identify a senior’s individual needs. A highquality firm will spend ample time with a senior and follow up once the senior has been placed.

Due to the risk of being misled by a nursing home placement company, seniors and their families should do their research before settling on a company. The company should offer in-person services and be embedded in the local community. Often, but not always, small firms provide better service.

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Posted on Friday, December 12th, 2014. Filed under Estate Planning, Long-Term Care.