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As discussed in the previous section, your GP and/or local Social Services department will be able to assess your needs and help you understand the level of care you require.

Once your needs have been established and you’re clear on the type of care you require, the first step is then to decide on location – and this may not be as easy as it sounds.

Ultimately, you will be aiming to choose a home that is conveniently located for you, your family and friends. The priority of location will depend upon the severity of your condition. It is important to think of future needs and how likely it will be to get out and about.

Questions to consider are as follows:

  • Do you want to live in the locality or community you have been used to?
  • Is the home convenient for relatives and friends to visit?
  • Will you be able to keep your existing GP in the new location?
  • Is there easy access to public transport?
  • What public recreational facilities would you wish to use?
  • Will you be close to local amenities that are important to you, e.g. a place of worship, post office or shops?


Choosing the right care home is, in many ways, just like choosing any other place to live. It is imperative to visit several homes to compare and contrast various facilities and services. Once you’ve agreed with your family on the best area you should aim to build up a short list of three or four suitable options.