Important to Know
Before you embark on the process of moving into higher nursing care, it is vitally important to know the following points.
EPOA – Have an Enduring Power of Attorney nominated.
It does not have to be activated if you still have the cognitive ability to make your own financial and healthcare decisions, but it is strongly advisable to have a document prepared for when this may not be the case. Choose someone who you trust ie a close and trusted family member that has your best interests at heart. It is also good to have an EPOA who lives locally or that can be easily contacted to sign relevant documentation. They must be prepared to make some difficult decisions on your behalf, but decisions that will lead to the best care and comfort for you.
End of Life Choices
End of life decisions are difficult to think about and even to discuss. These discussions are important to have before considering the next step in your life into aged care. Facilities need some written direction as to your end of life care and decisions, so they can ensure your wishes are met. You can get your solicitor to draw up a legally binding Advanced Health Directive, or even complete a Statement of Choice and get your GP to witness and sign this document.
Involve Your GP
Keep your GP involved in the discussion on transitioning to residential care. If there is one thing that will help the process move along more smoothly, it is to book a consult with your GP to discuss. GPs are an integral link in the chain . They are required to provide clinical information and health histories to aged care facilities and need to complete a good deal of paperwork in order to advise of care needs. They want to hear from you and many are willing to continue to see patients in their nursing homes. This is a discussion between you and your GP. Continuation of care is vital to many people entering nursing homes and to have your trusted GP willing to visit you in your nursing home provides great comfort and reassurance. GPs want to see you and be involved in your changing care needs.