When you decide that it is time to begin your search for a nursing home there are many factors you need to consider before settling on one. The nursing home should be close by family so they can visit on a regular basis and it needs to be somewhere that you or your loved one feels safe and happy. Finding that perfect place can be trickier than you think.

With the amount of cases of nursing home abuse being at a scary fever pitch in the media it’s likely that you will be incredibly discerning in choosing a place for you or your loved one to stay. You don’t have to do this completely blind however. You can ask the nursing home for their most recent survey.

This survey is conducted by a group of highly trained officials who come in completely unannounced and turn the entire facility upside down in their search for violations in health codes and ethical law. These inspections usually last for about three days but can last up to a week.

Don’t be alarmed if when you read in the report the facility has a few minor violations. Since the inspection is so thorough even the most meticulous and observant of administrators can rack up a few minor infractions. It’s not unusual to come out of an inspection with up to eight minor violations.

You need to be on the lookout for things like major health code infractions in the kitchen and medical areas and of reports of abuse or neglect among the staff and patients. Be very wary of any administrator who does not relinquish the results of their facility. As a matter of fact, you should report them to the Medicare bureau office as these results are supposed to be made available to the general public.

You can find shorter versions of the report online at the Medicare website. These documents can be a huge factor in choosing a nursing home for yourself or for your loved one. Be sure to look them over carefully and thoroughly. This obviously should not take the place of an actual visit to the facility. Nothing can beat the first hand experience you get when visiting a potential nursing home. You might also want to ask the administrator if you can sit in on a monthly resident meeting or come back at different times throughout the day to make sure that this is the right fit.