Nursing Home Compare - selecting a nursing home

By Josh Silverman on November 18, 2011

Selecting a nursing home is a difficult and emotional process for families.  No one wants to put a family member in a nursing home.  The decision is usually made at a time of crisis when a family member is recovering from a severe illness and being discharged from the hospital.  We have all heard of nursing home patients developing severe pressure ulcers and being subject to neglect and indignities which only increases the anxiety of the patient and his or her family.

Unfortunately the selection criteria is usually limited to which nursing homes have available beds, clean facilities, and perhaps convenience.  None of those factors tells you anything about the quality of care provided.  The Nursing Home Compare website contains useful information about the quality of care provided at the nursing home and allows you to compare the nursing home to others in the state and country.  Specific care indicators include the prevalence of pressure ulcers, infection, and feeding tubes. 

As noted on the nursing home compare website, the information tells you about past performance at the nursing home.  It is true that nursing homes that have provided poor care in the past can improve and likewise nursing homes that previously provided a high level of care can deteriorate.  However, the information still can be helpful in making this all important decision. 

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