SPOKANE, Wash. -- Finding a long-term care facility for an elderly family member can be hard. It can be even harder to know what goes on inside those places.
According to reports from the Department of Health and Human Services, we learned about facilities doing everything from injuring, abusing and even forcing the elderly to drink something they didn't want.
Sharon Niblock, is a trained Ombudsman for the Washington Long-Term Care Program. They advocate for people in long-term care and inform residents of their rights and mediate with facilities to solve problems.
It's important to do your own research. You can find some reports on the Medicare website along with a series of ratings.
Each nursing home is given an overall rating along with health inspection, staffing and quality ratings. According to the site, Spokane nursing homes rank above or much above average with a handful below or much below average.
The Ombudsman suggest that you make sure you do these things when looking for long-term care:
-Go into the facility
-Go different times of day
-Talk with residents.
-Read state inspection reports. Each facility must have one to give you.
-Go to pharmacies and ask staff members what they've heard about different facilities.