Key information to ensure you pick the home that’s right for your loved one. Think about what’s important to you and your loved one Create a list outlining what you would consider to be essential or desirable. This can help you create a shortlist of suitable homes which you can then go look around. Consider the following aspects: ●Location ○Are there shops and places to visit nearby? ○Are friends and family able to get there easily? ●Facilities ○Is the room and building suitably adapted? ○Is there a garden or accessible outdoor space? ●Care and support ○What specialist support is available? ○Can in-house nursing be provided? ●Activities ○Is there an activities coordinator? ○Do they have an activities programme or regularly planned events? ●Food ○Does it meet their dietary requirements? ○Does the menu regularly change? Which? have produced a comprehensive checklist of things to consider when choosing a home. While Age UK have also produced a checklist of questions to ask when you get to the stage of visiting care homes Read the most recent inspection report for the homes you are considering This can be found on The Care Quality Commission (CQC) website - www.cqc.org.uk. The CQC is the independent regulator of health and social care in England. They provide inspection reports which rate the performance of a care home and provide an insight into how well a home is managed and the level of care it offers. Contact suitable care homes Once you have narrowed down the list of potential care homes and read their inspection reports you should think about contacting suitable homes to gain more information and to arrange a visit. It would be a good idea to phone each home and talk about your specific care needs and how the home will meet them. This is also a good time to find out more about fees and contracts, and book an in-person visit. As a further step, you may want to read some online reviews of the homes you are considering. This can be done on websites such as carehome.co.uk.