One of the most important attributes of an assisted living facility is its safety. Families have entrusted you with their loved ones because they are unable to ensure their safety and wellbeing at home. Senior citizens are vulnerable to several dangers that younger generations don’t generally need to worry about. To make sure that your senior residents are safe in the dining area, keep the following in mind.
Keep it Clean and Sanitary
A clean and sanitary dining area should be a given for any food area. It is especially important for the elderly because they are more prone to illnesses. You need to realize that it isn’t only food that you will need to clean up. Seniors often have difficulty with their bowel movements, coughing, drooling, and even throwing up. As such, you need to be prepared for each of these situations.
Have on hand the proper cleaning materials to take care of issues immediately. Use furniture that is comfortable for the seniors and easy to clean. Keep in mind that this is more than just about keeping the seniors happy and healthy. You have a legal obligation to do this. Any health code violations may close you down, which can cause several problems.
Have Staff to Monitor
Having staff to monitor residents is essential in an assisted living facility. You should make sure that you have a few extra on hand during mealtimes. There needs to be enough people there that the residents won’t be left unattended if several seniors have problems at the same time. Your staff needs to be trained on how to react to problems. They need to be trained on how to deal with choking, vomiting, burns, or any other else that might occur during mealtime. If you have residents that need help eating, make sure that you have staff specifically assigned to these residents apart from the staff that is monitoring generally.
Serve Safe Meals
Because seniors have limited mobility, some meals that are safe for younger people can be dangerous. Food that is very hot is more easily spilled and can lead to burns. Residents with cognitive difficulties might not think to test their food before eating which could lead to burns in the mouth, tongue, and throat. Meals that require a sharp knife to cut are also dangerous. Residents can easily cut themselves. These meals should be served precut. Because many residents may have dental difficulties, avoid serving meals that require a lot of chewing.
Caring for the aging population is a labor of love. It takes hard work to make the last few years of a person’s life safe and comfortable. As you put forth every effort to ensure your resident’s safety, you will earn their and their families’ gratitude. You will also gain a reputation for quality care which will help with your advertising.
If you’re interested in investing in assisted living centers, view our current listings here!