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The Benefits of Care Homes - 24 Mar 2017

As part of our Hartford Care values, we pride ourselves on offering care in a comfortable, safe and happy environment. We know the move into care can be a daunting and unsettling experience, not only for the individual concerned but for family members and friends as well.

We thought we would share a series of case studies with you to show the benefits of moving into care.

Please give a short summary of your relation to your loved one in our home, how long have they been there (please name the home) and if this is their first time in care.

My mother, has been at Newland House, Witney, since October 2014. Up until the age of 91, Mum had been managing in her own home in Portsmouth, with about fortnightly visits from myself, the help of a weekly cleaner, and weekly visits to an Age Concern Day Centre. Her neighbours too checked on her regularly, and contacted me if they had any concerns.

  • Have you seen a positive change in your loved one since joining the home and in which ways has this been demonstrated?

Mum's appetite had declined in her own home, and one positive, and almost immediate outcome was that her weight increased as she enjoyed the excellent freshly prepared meals provided by the home.

She thoroughly enjoys the attention given to her by all the staff, and when told how nice she looks, tells me that's because she has "dressers" who come each morning to help her choose what to wear. She is full of praise for how very kind everyone is to her, and to all the residents. She has made friends at the home, with both staff and residents, and as she is a very cheerful and friendly lady, this is very important to her. She loves all the activities, and although she isn't as capable as she used to be at understanding, and remembering what she has done, I can see by my visits, and by the regular photos I am shown, and sent, of the activities she has done, that she really enjoys taking part in them all.

  • What are the benefits the home brings to your loved ones life and your own?

Much of what I have already mentioned applies here too. But in addition, from my point of view, I know Mum is safe and extremely happy at Newland. I know she is very well looked after, and any change in her health is recorded and dealt with appropriately. I am also informed whenever there is any concern about her, and am told what is being done to deal with that situation. I have personally been supported by staff when there has been any distressing event, such as a fall needing a hospital visit. I have also been helped to understand, and advised how to deal with a loved one who is slowly changing. I sometimes feel I am losing her, but the staff have helped me to deal with this too.

I feel part of the family at Newland. I am always warmly greeted, and am included whenever there is a social event. My grandchildren are also made to feel extremely welcome, and enjoy going to visit their great nana.

It is such a huge relief to me to have Mum so close to my home, in a caring and loving environment, where she is so happy. I sleep comfortably at night knowing she will be regularly checked on.

  • Did you have any hesitations before putting our loved one in care? If so, have these uncertainties changed?

Absolutely!! I had only had experience of one care home back in the 1970's, and that wasn't an enjoyable memory. I took time to visit nearly all the local care homes. Newland was different from the start. I was warmly welcomed, loved the light airiness of the building, saw staff who smiled and welcomed me, and the small homeliness of the building was obvious. It is smaller than some other homes, and I felt Mum would fit into this compact, more personal setting. It does feel like a family.  I can't praise Newland enough, and have no regrets at all about the decision we made to move Mum there.

I so enjoy my visits to see Mum, and think I have a closer relationship with her now than when I visited her in her own home. Those visits usually meant lots of cleaning, shopping, doctor and hospital appointments, gardening, sorting out bank statements, bills etc. Now my visits are purely social and are just time to chat.

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