Dementia can lead to loved ones developing fairly aggressive behaviors which can be problematic when finding a quality memory care community.

People with dementia can show signs of aggressive behavior, bursts of anger, and combative responses as an unfortunate result of progressing dementia. This can become a lot to handle in certain care communities and distract from other patient care. Unfortunately, some places end up having to ask those patients to leave, putting them and their families or caregivers in a tough position. So what are the steps to take when this happens? How do you find a facility that will accept those patients?

a psychologist discussing behavioral health with a patient

Why Do Evictions Happen?

Evicting a resident from a senior care community can happen when patients become dangerous to themselves or others, or the level of care they require exceeds that offered by the facility. Either way, these evictions can leave families and their loved ones needing to look for a new assisted living facility.

State regulations can vary quite a bit, but often times state aid will offer little to no resources or protections when this happens to families. The unfortunate reality is there are some less-than-kind nursing homes out there where the owners try to charge families more for extended care, often causing families to leave for financial reasons. So even beyond scenarios of combative or dangerous behavior in patients, evictions can happen at a moment’s notice. It’s important to know what you can do when this happens to you.

What to Do if it Happens to You

If you are faced with eviction from a memory care facility, there are a few critical things to do before immediately moving out.

  1. Communicate with trusted staff within the community. Chances are, you’ve built relationships with people who work with your loved one and can ask for more clarification on reasons why the eviction notice has been issued and see if there are ways to work together to keep your loved one in their home.
  2. Read through the agreement documents signed by you/your loved one, and the community very closely. Make sure you have a good understanding of the policies surrounding eviction and the just cause of evictions that are written in these documents. This can help protect your loved one who is getting evicted as well as provide some insight into possible justified reasons for the notice. 
  3. If the cause for eviction is the community can no longer meet the level of care the resident requires, ask a physician to come in and assess the situation. Getting the resident’s healthcare team involved can help find solutions to issues or concerns about the resident continuing to age in place. Having multiple professionals involved in decision-making will help keep everyone accountable. While many communities have the resident’s best interest in mind, there may be other hidden motives involved. Your physician can evaluate the level of care needed and determine if the community is able to provide appropriate care. Documentation from physicians and other healthcare professionals can help persuade whether or not an eviction is necessary. 
  4. In certain cases, you may want to consider taking the eviction notice to your local civil court. Like apartment buildings, these memory care residents have rights against their landlord (the facility) and can fight an eviction there. Many places will not want to go through small claims court and may be willing to negotiate an agreement to allow your loved one to stay. 
  5. And lastly, remember that your loved one is living in this community. If you feel that the community is not prioritizing the care of their residents, it may be time to find a new more suitable home for your family member. It’s also important to approach the community staff and leadership with a collaborative attitude to find effective solutions to keep your loved one safe and living the highest possible quality of life without jeopardizing other residents or staff in the community. If your loved one does actually need more intensive care than what their current community can provide, it is best for all involved to find a better setting where they can get the care they require. 
  6. If it is time to look at new memory care facilities, it could be effective to ask your physician or staff from their previous residence for recommendations.

woman helping loved one with dementia

 

What to Look for in a Dementia Care Home

Finding an assisted living facility for a loved one with dementia can be difficult, especially if they show aggressive behavior. Considering facilities don’t necessarily promote themselves as aggressive dementia care homes, working with your physician would be an effective place to start. If you end up searching on Google, you should start with finding well equipped facilities with highly rated memory care units. Once you have a few of these assisted living facilities identified, you’ll have to call for more information and explain the situation. Make sure to be completely honest about the situation and any history of physical or verbal aggression. While it might be tempting to leave out the details, the priority is finding a well equipped facility that is aware and can handle the situation appropriately.

Here are some key factors to look for in your next memory care community:

  • They specialize in dementia and Alzheimer’s disease care.
  • They have secured units dedicated to the care of those with memory loss.
  • They offer onsite mental health services and behavioral therapy for residents.
  • They have trained staff that can diffuse aggressive situations with dementia patients.
  • Staff members communicate any concerning behaviors, such as aggression and combative responses, and collaborate with family and healthcare teams to find creative care planning solutions.
  • They have space to temporarily place residents showing combative behaviors for their comfort and safety.
  • They make it possible to add-on extra memory or behavioral therapy services as needed.

Overall, finding a place with memory care for your family member with dementia is crucial to them living a good life. It helps alleviate the stress of moving them into a senior living community where you can trust they are being cared for.

If you happen to be looking for a dementia care facility in Minnesota, make sure to give us a call. Sunflower Communities offers a wonderful memory care program that caters to every need of dementia and Alzheimer’s patients. Check it out today!