Cultural touchstones and being treated with dignity can make all the difference when choosing an aged care facility

  • This is part of a series about aged care in Australia

In the 2007 film The Savages, actors Philip Seymour Hoffman and Laura Linney play conflicted siblings faced with choosing an aged care facility for their elderly, irascible father as he declines into dementia. In one scene, they argue in the car park of a nursing home about whether or not it is good enough for him. The gardens are nice, insists Linney’s character, as much to reassure herself as anyone else as she battles her own guilt.

Ah, the gardens. Visiting residential aged care, it’s easy to be taken in by the superficial details. We cling to the cosmetic so as not to have to ask the harder questions.

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