"We don't leave the compassion out!"
Denver, CO
Don't Get Caught Up in the Hype When Selecting a Nursing Home
By Maya Wheeler, M.H.A, Community Outreach Liaison

Do you remember the old saying everything that glitters is not "Gold". This is a very true statement when choosing a nursing home for your loved one. Selecting a facility is one of the most important choices you will have to make for your loved one, so it is crucial that you take time to ensure your choice is the best one for them. Therefore, it is very important that the selection of the facility is not based solely on the appearance of the nursing home. Instead the choice should be made based on the care needs of your loved one and the nursing homes ability meet those needs.

At Forest Street Compassionate Care Center, we recognize the importance of caregiver's having good information available to them when deciding to place a loved one for short-term (i.e rehabilitation) or long-term care. This is why we have a community outreach liaison program to help families get through this very trying and difficult time. The community liaison purpose is to work with families to assist them in determining their loved ones needs, identifying available resources to pay for care, and encouraging caregiver's do their homework when selecting a facility. Preliminary research may consist of:
  • Contacting the Long-Term Ombudsmen program. Each nursing home and assisted living facility in Colorado has an Ombudsmen who is responsible for protecting and promoting the rights of people with disabilities and older people in Colorado (
  • Contacting the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment ( to get information on the nursing home such as Occurrence Reporting, Complaints, and Health Survey Results
  • Utilizing Nursing Home Comparison tools such as the Federal Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services tool at
  • Visiting facilities that are being considered. This allows you an opportunity to get a feel for the facility; and how the nursing home can meet your loved ones needs. While at the nursing home be mindful of the following things:
    • Physical appearance of the building
    • Safety
    • Cleanliness
    • Room assignments
    • Food
    • Medical/Nursing Care
    • Special therapies (i.e. physical, occupational, and speech therapies)
    • Activities program
    • Quality of service
    • Financial arrangements (i.e.: insurances the facilities accepts)
    • Reaching out to current facility residents and family members, citizen advocacy groups, physicians, hospital discharge planners, and clergy members for their opinions
For more information on the Community Outreach Liaison program or Forest Street Compassionate Care Center please visit the facility at 3345 Forest Street, Denver, CO 80207, or call (303) 393.7600.

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