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Care home checklist

You may look at several care homes before choosing the one that is right for you or your loved one.

We have put together a checklist to help you think about the care homes you visit, things to look out for and questions you may like to ask.

Location and building

  1. Is it easy to get to the care home on public transport?
  2. If you visit by car, is it easy to find somewhere to park?
  3. Is the approach to the care home well-kept and tidy?
  4. What kind of shops and amenities are there close by?
  5. Were you made to feel welcome?
  6. Are entrances and rooms in the home easily accessible?

Day-to-day life

  1. Is the care home clean and well looked after?
  2. Do the staff seem engaged and attentive?
  3. Do the residents appear happy?
  4. Do health care professionals such doctors, opticians, chiropodists and physiotherapists visit the care home?
  5. Are complementary therapies available?
  6. Does the care home have suitable equipment for people with mobility issues?


  1. Do the staff interact well with residents?
  2. Do staff respect the privacy and dignity of the residents in their care?
  3. Is there a key worker for each resident?
  4. Do staff get to know residents personally?
  5. Can staff be seen around the care home?
  6. Is the care home manager approachable?

Communal areas

  1. Do residents have a variety of communal areas to choose from?
  2. Do staff encourage residents to use the communal areas?
  3. Is there easy access to all communal areas?
  4. Is there an accessible and safe garden?
  5. Do the lounges or other sitting rooms have pleasant views?
  6. Are there lifts in the home?


  1. Can residents choose where they eat, e.g. in a dining room or in their room?
  2. Do residents have a choice of menu for every meal?
  3. Can special diets be catered for?
  4. Does the chef talk with the residents to discuss meal choices?
  5. Do residents receive assistance with eating if required?
  6. Can residents make drinks for themselves and have access to snacks at any time?


  1. What is the overall impression of the bedrooms?
  2. Do the bedrooms have en-suite facilities?
  3. Can residents bring their own furniture?
  4. Is there an emergency pull-cord available?


  1. Do staff encourage residents to continue with hobbies and interests?
  2. Are there dedicated activities staff?
  3. Do the staff organise activities outside the care home?
  4. Is there access to transport for activities outside the care home?
  5. Are special events, such as birthdays and religious holidays celebrated?
  6. Do the staff give residents the opportunity to help with activities within the care home, e.g. gardening or cooking?
  7. Do the staff arrange entertainers and groups of interest to visit?
  8. Do the staff give residents regular exercise opportunities?
  9. Do staff consult with residents on the types of activities planned?

Visits from family and friends

  1. Does the care home welcome visitors at any time?
  2. Are children allowed to visit?
  3. Does the care home allow family pets to visit?
  4. Can visitors dine with their relatives/friends?


Update from Sarah Clarke-Kuehn (Infection Control) – Group Director Sanctuary Care 5 June 2020

Update from Sarah Clarke-Kuehn (Visits) – Group Director Sanctuary Care 29 May 2020

Update from Sarah Clarke-Kuehn (Financial reassurance) – Group Director Sanctuary Care 20 May 2020

Update from Sarah Clarke-Kuehn – Group Director Sanctuary Care 12 May 2020

Update from Sarah Clarke-Kuehn (Testing) – Group Director Sanctuary Care 7 May 2020

Update from Sarah Clarke-Kuehn (PPE) – Group Director Sanctuary Care 30 April 2020

Update from Sarah Clarke-Kuehn (Food) – Group Director Sanctuary Care 27 April 2020

Update from Sarah Clarke-Kuehn (Visits and PPE) – Group Director Sanctuary Care 15 April 2020

At Sanctuary Care our number one priority is to keep our residents, their relatives and our staff safe.

With the increasing number of reported cases of Coronavirus in the UK, we have taken the difficult decision to minimise all non-essential visits to our residential and nursing homes until further notice. These include routine visits from loved ones and friends, entertainers, hairdressers, volunteers, work experience students and school parties.

We have not taken this decision lightly and understand this will be upsetting for relatives who want to visit loved ones. We do feel this is the best way to keep our residents safe and is one of many proactive, preventative measures we are taking to stop this infection getting into our homes.

We do hope you understand why we are taking these precautions. Please don’t hesitate to call if you would like to speak to us directly if you have any questions or concerns.

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