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Nursing Homes

Potomac Seniors Village is not a nursing home.  The state of Maryland provides that “[b]efore a nursing home placement is considered, family members may want to explore the feasibility of utilizing alternative such as home care, adult day care . . . [or] assisted living.”  We highlight five guideposts that families should consider when choosing a nursing home.

  1. Review Inspection Reports and Complaints:  The State of Maryland requires two inspections annually.  You should review inspection reports and scrutinize major violations of the codes.   You can receive further information on nursing home violations by calling Licensure and Regulatory Healthcare Inspection at (240) 777-3986.  The Nursing Home Ombudsman office is staffed by four courteous, professional, and trained volunteers to identify problems, investigate complaints, and resolve disputes between the care provider and the residents.   Albeit, the staff cannot recommend or disapprove the quality of a nursing home, they can assist family members in providing informed decisions before selecting the right nursing home.
  1. Nursing Home Environment:  Visit the nursing home at least twice.  You should schedule your first visit with an administrator and view the rooms, speak to staff, and meet the residents.   Ask concrete and specific questions and accept only specific answers.  You may decide to pay an unannounced visit to inspect and see the care first-hand.  But do not expect to meet with an advisor or a marketing administrator since they may not be present or may not have time to answer more questions.   In your visits, you should be wary of the ratio of staff members to residents.  You should also observe resident’s meals.  At Potomac Seniors Village, we provide an individualized meal plan that is catered to each individual’s unique needs.  Each individual should be cared for as if he or she is at home in order to provide the utmost comfort and individualized attention.
  1. Cost: Medicaid or Medicare Programs and private insurances may pay for nursing home costs.  The State of Maryland enacted a Medicaid Waiver Program responsible for the implementation and ongoing administration of care providers.  Pursuant to Section 1915(c) of the Social Security Act, Medicaid law authorizes States to cover a wide variety of Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) for the elderly.  Thus, through a waiver program the elderly can avail long-term institutional care, including a nursing facility for those who are physically disabled and/or cognitively impaired.  In order for an individual to enroll in the program, an individual must meet specific requirements.  An individual must be:  
    1. Medically qualified (requires intermediate care for facility-mental retardation, chronic or rehabilitative hospital level of care, psychiatric hospital level of care, nursing facility due to physical disability and/or cognitively impaired)
    2. Certified for the waiver’s institutional level of care (requires an assessment from their local health department)
    3. Cost Medicaid no more in the alternative institutionalized community under the waiver program than he or she would have cost Medicaid in an institution
    4. Be financially eligible based on their income and asset (monthly income of no more than $2,022 for the year 2009 and assets may not exceed $2000 or $2,500 depending on eligibility category.
    5. Call Waiver Services Registry at (866) 417-8480 to make application.

If you do not qualify for any governmental assistance, your first responsibility is to make a budget.  Allow a range of $500 to $700 budgetary restrictions for the community that may fit your loved one’s preference and needs.  Never exceed your budget because the cost will always increase and will not decrease. 

Specifically ask for any additional costs associated with providing additional care if health deteriorates.  At Potomac Seniors Village, as an assisted living provider, we do not charge extra for television, phone, laundry, and medication management.

  1. Seek Professional Advice: An individual should consult a geriatric care advisor or an attorney to obtain further information and to avail all the benefits provided in the law.  Families will generally save money in the long-run if they receive competent advice and are able to make informed decisions.  You can call us to receive references of qualified professionals in the area of elderly law and geriatric care to obtain information on several services available under state wide programs, such as: Medicaid Acute, Primary, and Preventive Services, Home Health Care (Living At Home Waiver Program), Prescription drugs, Durable Medical Equipment and Disposable Medical Supplies.
  1. Location: Location is an essential component of choosing the right nursing home.  Elderly health is closely associated with family visits and we have seen a positive correlation between family involvement and resident’s health.  The location should be close to family members who anticipate frequent visits and care for their loved one.  Thus, a nursing home should not have unreasonable visitation constraints.

nursing_home.pngNursing Homes in the area