Hertfordshire has over 100 of them – how do you choose the best care home?

PUBLISHED: 10:33 24 January 2020 | UPDATED: 10:33 24 January 2020

The activities schedule has changed the lives of the residents at Autumn Vale. Picture: Getty Images

The activities schedule has changed the lives of the residents at Autumn Vale. Picture: Getty Images

Jacob Ammentorp Lund

It’s difficult enough to come to terms with the fact that you can no longer care for your dependant loved one, let alone choosing the best care home. You want peace of mind that your family member is looked after, but also that their lives are enhanced and fulfilled, regardless of their age and mental capacity.

The award-winning team at Gold Care Homes. Picture: Gold Care Homes.The award-winning team at Gold Care Homes. Picture: Gold Care Homes.

But how do you know which residential home is best? We spoke to Victoria Sives at Gold Care Homes who has put together a list of the elements of a home which she deems most important:

Nurturing environment

What makes one care home stand out from the other is when one goes the extra mile for the wellbeing of its residents. Picture: Getty ImagesWhat makes one care home stand out from the other is when one goes the extra mile for the wellbeing of its residents. Picture: Getty Images

It may be a basic request, but it's crucial that a care home creates a warm, nurturing environment for its residents and guests. At Gold Care Homes, staff are trained to deliver the highest standard of care for their residents, adhering to the 'Gold Care values' always: Trust, Empowerment, Accountability, and Integrity.

Non-stop fun

What makes one care home stand out from the other is when one goes the extra mile for the wellbeing of its residents. It's crucial that each resident is treated as an individual - the activities available are based on the likes of the residents, so there is something for everyone.

"We offer a range of hobbies, entertaining events, health and wellbeing classes, and day trips. We work alongside residents to tailor a personalised activity plan to ensure they get the most out of their time with us. This also gives them the opportunity to interact with the wider community" Victoria explains.

Home away from home

Although it's difficult to replicate the home of any resident, a focus should be on providing as much of a homely feel as possible - it's what's inside that counts. A cosy, comfortable, clean environment, alongside compassionate, helpful staff makes for a living space that residents will feel at home in.

"All visitors to Gold Care Homes are expected to introduce themselves to residents and explain why they're visiting. This is a way for our residents to feel fully comfortable and in control - you wouldn't let a stranger into your home without explanation!" says Victoria.

Transparent and trustworthy

Even after extensive research, you'll want to keep track of how your family member or friend is coping in their new, carefully selected home. All staff at Gold Care Homes are vigilant and instil trust in both residents and family.

"We've adopted a transparent approach, informing the relevant family members of their loved ones' experience - through the good days and the bad - to create a sense of involvement and for peace of mind." explains Victoria.

Excellent care home reviews

If you were looking for a restaurant or hotel, you would check for good reviews - why not do the same for care homes? A trustworthy starting point for this is carehomes.co.uk - here you can see honest reviews to give you an initial idea of the culture of care homes you're considering. Most of Gold Care Homes are rated as 'Good' or 'Outstanding' by the CQC.

Additionally, it's always wise to check for accreditations. Gold Care Homes has gained many awards and accolades over the years; most recently, Shameem Chowdhury - a staff member at Autumn Vale - was presented the Compassion in Care Award at the prestigious Hertfordshire Care Awards. In fact, 2019 saw Gold Care Homes win 3 prestigious awards as a result of their continued efforts.

Special staff to resident relationships

"The committed healthcare professionals at Gold Care Homes build lasting relationships with the residents they look after. Not only do staff spend time with the residents undertaking their day-to-day care duties, but they also engage with them via the many activities taking place." Victoria says.

It's important that your loved one gets plenty of interaction and feels valued by both their fellow residents and staff.

Gold Care Homes is a well-established care group offering a range of care services as well as 21 care homes in Hertfordshire and nationwide.

Learn more about Gold Care Homes on goldcarehomes.com. Contact them by calling 01895 257010, via email using enquires@goldcarehomes.com or visit their head office at Gidar House, 13 The Crossway, Uxbridge, UB10 0JH.


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