5 reasons why you should consider a smaller nursing home for your loved one
Remaining at home is not always possible for your loved one as they age. Some people need to move into residential aged care for a higher level of care that cannot be provided at home. There are many aspects to choosing the right nursing home for a loved one, but for the purpose of this article, we focus on the benefits of a smaller nursing home.
Choosing a nursing home is not just about the physical environment, it’s about the social interaction, the sense of belonging and how the staff approach the community they are caring for. New research into better practice aged care by the Royal Commission shows that “smaller residential care homes encourage the independence of residents.”
What are the benefits of smaller nursing homes?
1. Feels like home
Feeling at home is about having your natural rhythms, having breakfast when you want to, a cup of tea when you feel like it, getting up and getting dressed when you want to. Smaller residences don’t need to work to a precise schedule as there is more flexibility.
2. Higher staff to resident ratio
At St Louis we have a higher staff to resident ratio and are known for our attentive care. Especially when one of our residents has returned from a hospital stay and needs more care, or if someone has just moved in and is transitioning, we’ll put on additional staff to help them settle in comfortably.
3. Personalised care - ability to meet special or personal needs
The staff in a smaller nursing home get to the know the residents better, developing closer relationships because they have more time. We get to know family members who tell us about their relative’s history and what they loved to do. We do our best to help our residents enjoy these years of their life. We’ve often gone the extra mile purely for our residents’ pleasure and enjoyment. Read our story about “Never too old, never too late. Anne's top social events that made our residents rock!”.
4. Smaller communities are more socially supported
A supportive social structure in a nursing home is essential for the ongoing health of our residents, as well as staff. We’re all a part of the community. Residents are more confident to participate in social events or to simply enjoy a cup of tea together. There is a greater sense of belonging in a smaller community.
We’ve had some of our residents get back into the water and swim again after many years of not being able to. We also have residents with dementia now cooking hearty soups for themselves and other residents. They enjoy the teamwork and the ability to care for themselves and others again.
5. Lower hospitalisation and admissions to emergency departments
There is a significantly lower rate of admissions and presentations to hospitals of older Australians who live in smaller facilities. This particular study of 500 elderly Australians found that people living in smaller nursing homes had 70% less admissions to hospital emergency. The sense of emotional wellbeing in smaller nursing homes is greater because of more attentive care.
St Louis Aged Care - smaller nursing homes in Adelaide and Victor Harbor
St Louis’s nursing home in Adelaide is a 45-bed residence and an accredited “extra service” nursing home which means we provide a significantly higher level of aged care services to our residents.
St Louis on Sea is our newest 8-bed share home in Victor Harbor offering high quality dementia and aged care in luxury accommodation on the beachfront. The carers adopt a Montessori approach to aged care and help residents live fulfilling and meaningful lives with the skills they have.
For more information about our nursing homes in Adelaide or Victor Harbor, please call us on 1800 785 684.
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