New Washington State Law Will Regulate Eldercare Referral Companies

Finding proper senior care is not as easy as finding someone to clean your carpet or babysit or Saturday night.  Yet some of the services that provide handyman and babysitters seem to think it is the same.

Senior care professionals know the many dynamics involved with senior care, from emotional and physical needs to medical care requirements and ongoing planning for financial capabilities.  Does the senior want to stay at home and if so, is their home appropriate?  Would they enjoy life more if they moved to a senior living community?  Will they eventually need to find nursing home or hospice care? What does Medicare cover and would they be in a postion at some point to qualify for Medicaid?

Proper senior care requires learning a complete industry with a unique language (ADL's?) and many licensing and training regulations and provider variations in each state.  It requires professionals with experience.

The state of Washington passed a law that was signed by the governor in May, 2011, regulating senior care referral placement agencies, to make sure referrals are made by qualified senior care advisors and to quality senior living communities.  The Seattle Times has a series of investigative reports and found some referral agencies, such as A Place for Mom, did not have advisors with senior care experience and certifications and referrals were made to facilities that were in violation of Washington's licensing requirements.  The new law will make sure the referral agencies check the state database to make sure a facility is not in violation and require the senior care advisor to create a customized care plan and maintain records about the senior and the referral.  Other eldercare referral agencies do take the senior on in-person tours and hire advisors who are certified senior advisors or geriatric care managers and Registered Nurses with experience in senior care.  You can follow Washington state's guidelines for any eldercare referral agency you hire.

Learn about senior care options review nursing home ratings and costs and if you will need to move to a senior living community, it makes sense to use a quality referral agency.  Review quality standards for eldercare referral agencies and the Washington state eldercare referral law.

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