One highly effective way to ensure senior living communities are running properly on a consistent basis is to perform a series of mock inspections. In addition to preparing for actual inspections, a lot can be uncovered when taking a critical eye to your daily routines. And while studying new methods of care or reading about the latest trends in senior living community management will help to make you or your teammates more knowledgeable, nothing can compare to putting those ideas to the test and analyzing the results.
Below are some of the reasons why mock inspections are so important within senior living communities and how SeniorLivingU can help your community pass any test at any time.
Every state has a unique set of regulations for senior living communities
Compliance plays a large role in running senior living communities. Just like many other establishments such as restaurants or health care facilities, senior living communities have standards set by federal and state government to ensure that proper care is provided to patients or residents. Assessments and certifications must be reviewed on at least an annual basis to adhere to federal regulations. These inspections, commonly referred to as “state surveys,” can cover a variety of topics such as:
- Staff and resident interactions
- Cleanliness of the care environment
- Efficacy of any care equipment
- Safety codes for food storage
- Fire safety codes and preparedness for other emergencies
- Quality of residential care processes
State surveys aren’t the only guidelines that need to be covered in senior living communities, however. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) carries a set of regulations to make sure all employees are working in a safe environment. Facilities that provide Medicare or Medicaid services also have specific safety codes and compliance certifications that need to be met, with separate standards for any facility that is state-funded.
Performing regular mock inspections can ensure that the standards set by the government or OSHA are consistently being met in addition to taking the pressure off when the time comes for actual annual inspections and compliance checks.
Inspection ratings matter for current and future residents
While the court of public opinion can carry a lot of influence on the reputation of senior living communities, inspection ratings can as well. Most state-level inspection and compliance ratings are made available to the public and can typically be found through a search on the internet. These ratings will play a critical role in then informing prospective residents about the quality of your community and how current residents are being cared for. In addition to prospective residents, families of current residents may also be keeping a close eye on inspection ratings to make sure their loved ones are receiving the best care.
One way to anticipate a passing inspection rating is to set a higher grading standard for your mock inspections than the acceptable state survey rating. This will help to ensure your team is going above and beyond what is needed during a state survey. Recording care practices so that team members can watch their actions is also a great way to identify stellar or poor execution of skills. Sitting down with your team to analyze the ratings of your mock inspection and to review video of different care scenarios will help to solidify the learning opportunities identified throughout your mock inspections.
How to prepare for any inspection
With so many training methods, it can be difficult to know which one to pick for your team. SeniorLivingU makes preparation for inspections easy by consulting with you to pinpoint your exact training needs. Our online resource center is full of courses and training modules and is also easily accessible for senior living communities to browse. By opening an account with SeniorLivingU, senior living professionals and executives can access our in-house experts for advice or mentorship as well as our full catalog of educational opportunities. Our team can also work with any size senior living community to set up ongoing or regular training courses for continued learning – something that will help you and your team stay accountable when it comes to mock inspections.
Beyond any state-level requirements, the best-performing senior living communities conduct regular mock inspections to uncover any discrepancies in their practices because they want to provide top-level care for their residents. In doing this, you are motivating your team to continue growing and working past any obstacles that might prevent them from giving the best care possible. At SeniorLivingU, our team of in-house experts can provide your team with the proper training, inspection guidelines, and educational tools to improve services within your senior living communities. Communities that take time to continually train make greater progress towards their goals.
SeniorLivingU is headquartered in Hershey, PA, serving as a support system and education provider for organizations and individuals within the senior living industry. Our website provides a full e-commerce storefront for registered account members to easily purchase new trainings as they see fit and as often as they like. You can also visit the FAQ page for some helpful tips on how to navigate our materials. To learn more about SeniorLivingU, the services we provide, and how we can provide the best resources for your organization, contact us today. We look forward to helping your team receive the quality assisted living training you’ve been searching for.