Please find below a list of frequently asked questions. It’s not exhaustive, but represents what we know are topics of importance to our residents and their families. We are always adding to the list.
Where do I start?
Often trying to find a home is as a result of a crisis of one sort or another, so you’re likely to feel under pressure to make a decision, but please try to take a little time before you do that. Talk to your GP, friends and family, they may have recommendations. www.cqc.org.uk is an excellent independent resource too.
Are there set visiting hours?
No, visitors are always welcome. We want all our residents to be able to see their family and friends at their convenience not ours. Of course the comfort of all our residents is paramount and we ask visitors to respect that.
Are residents involved in decisions about life in the care home?
We involve residents as much as possible in their life and care; we also liaise closely with relatives and seek their views. When we put our care plans together, for example, their help and guidance is invaluable.
What arrangements are there for attending religious services?
We carry out regular communion services. Any special requests for other religious services can be catered for.
Are rooms cleaned every day?
Yes they are, as are all communal areas within the home.
Is there a choice of menu for each meal?
Yes. If you have special dietary requirements we’ll prepare something just for you. Our chefs are fully trained in nutritional values and the meals are always freshly cooked in our kitchen every day. You can eat in your dining room or in your own room.
Can you have a snack whenever you want?
Yes, we have kitchens in each wing. We can make something for you or help you prepare something. We also make up snack packs which are ideal if anyone’s feeling peckish during the day or night.
Do you have regular activities?
Yes. There are a variety of activities that take place each week and regular visits are made by outside entertainers too. Activities include: arts and crafts, baking, dancing, light gardening, knit and natter, animal therapy and sensory work.
Are there restrictions on when you can make or receive phone calls?
No. This is your home and you can make calls from your room whenever you wish. You can use your own mobile phone, or we can fit a cordless phone in your room for an additional cost.
Are pets allowed?
Yes, we are a pet-friendly home and pets are allowed to visit. They are not allowed to stay as this would have an impact on our staff’s time and on the hygiene of the home.
What can you take into the home?
We would encourage you to bring in your mementoes as they really help to make your room look like a home from home. The rooms are already fully furnished but they’re very spacious (20m2) too, so there’s plenty of room for your favourite armchair or chest of drawers. We provide all the bed linen and towels, but please bring your own if you’d prefer.
What should I do if I’m not happy with the care I receive?
We are regulated by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and you can call them on 03000 616161 or by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also talk to any member of staff or Becky Pinnock, the Home Manager. You can also contact our Quality Manager at Outlook Care on 01277 637525 or email email@example.com.
My dad has dementia. Are you qualified to look after him?
Yes. All staff in our two dementia wings have received specialist training in caring for people who have dementia. In addition our home has been designed specifically to help people with dementia feel calmer and less disorientated in their surroundings. Please do contact the Alzheimer’s Society who will be able to provide fact sheets and further advice should you need it. www.alzheimers.org.uk
How can I/we pay for care?
The majority of people will need to pay something towards the cost of their care. If you have assets of more than £23,250 you will not be eligible for assistance from your local authority in paying for care home fees. You will be eligible if your assets are worth between £14,250 and £23,250. If your local authority is involved in your placement, the amount you will have to pay will be calculated through means testing. If you live in Essex, you can find out more about paying for a care home on the Essex County Council website. Age UK also provide a very useful checklist about finding, choosing and funding a care home.
Other sources of information include contacting your social worker for funding options or contacting your GP to find out which Continuing HealthCare (CHC) you are affiliated with to make contact and request an assessment.
Here are the answers to some of our most frequently asked questions. If you have a query that’s not here, please fill in our request form.