Making a long-term care decision

Does someone you love need long-term care

Have you had "the call" from a physician's office advising you to consider a nursing home for your parent or grandparent? Making the decision to place someone you love in long-term care is never easy. But once you’ve made the decision, you’ll need to choose a facility. How can you be sure you're making the right choice?

The best way to make a decision is to visit each nursing home yourself. Take a tour of the facility. Meet with the admissions staff and, if possible, with members of the nursing staff who will care for your loved one. Ask to see the residents’ rooms, activities areas, and any outdoor areas, gardens or grounds where the residents gather. Finally, sit down with the admissions staff and discuss costs and insurance coverage, so that you know exactly what the costs will be.

And don't worry if you feel a little overwhelmed after your visit; that’s normal. You can always come back for a second visit - remember, nursing home staffers have parents and grandparents, too, so they understand how you feel.


Once you feel comfortable with your choice, talk to your parent and explain what you like about the center. If feasible, bring your parent along for the second visit, but don’t be surprised if you encounter resistance. Few things in life are harder than a move, especially when we are older. Going into a nursing home can be emotionally wrenching and disorienting; fortunately, this will pass. The best nursing home teams are very experienced in helping newcomers settle in and learn the daily routines at the center. They'll also do their best to involve your family member in daily activities and social events where he or she can make friends with other residents at the center.


"My stay at Orchard Park Health and Rehabilitation Center made all the difference in helping me recover after my hospitalization. I was back on my feet just three weeks after triple bypass surgery and I feel better every day."
- Adam Mc

"I would like to thank the nurses, the physical therapists, and everyone at Orchard Park Health and Rehabilitation Center who worked so hard to help me come back after I broke my hip last March. I didn't think I would ever be able to live on my own again, but now you should see me with my cane - I can even drive and do my own shopping!"
- Mary L.