New California Assisted Living LawsWhat criteria would you use when selecting a senior living community for your parent:  that it's pet friendly; affordable; close to shopping and the staff seem friendly? What about its inspection history? Did you even think to ask for a community's inspection records or notice the latest report posted on the wall as you took a tour of the community? If you didn't, then you're not alone.

Just as restaurants are inspected to confirm the restaurant and its staff are in compliance with state regulations regarding food safety and handling, so too are senior living communities subject to inspection when providing assisted living services or memory care. Surveyors or inspectors visit the communities, whether to investigate a complaint or for licensure renewal, to confirm the community is in compliance with state regulations, such as managing medication properly or maintaining a clean living areas. The results of the visit are documented in an inspection or survey report. These survey reports, when reviewed over a period of several years, can reveal insight as to whether a community is failing to correct repeat deficiencies or is consistently providing a safe environment.

Many states have the inspection records online, whether in a summary form or the actual inspection reports. However, because these inspection reports are often not posted on a community's homepage or in an online senior living community directory, you will likely not think to search for these inspection records when looking for a community for your parents. Which is why is posting the inspection records of a community on each community's profile page. This way you have a one-stop place to review the community's cost, amenities and inspection history without having to visit multiple websites.

Currently, we are piloting this feature for senior living communities in San Antonio, and we want to hear your feedback as to whether including the inspection records are helpful in your search. To view the inspection records of a San Antonio community, visit San Antonio Assisted Living. Clicking on the State Records tab allows you to see all the licensed communities and where they rank in terms of deficiencies. To see the inspection history for a specific community, click on the "Communities" tab and click on "Get Info" for any community. On the community's profile page, click on the "Records" tab to see how this community's deficiency history ranks against others and its deficiencies.

Our goal is to post the inspection records for all licensed communities within Texas and eventually other states as well. Please let us know of improvements we can make in displaying the inspection records or if you want to know more information about a community, such as whether it has received fines. To learn more about how to find inspection records for other states, visit our State Licensing Center.