Independent Living Communities
Senior independent living communities are a great senior living option for those who need little supervision but do have a few medical problems that require care or monitoring.
These independent living communities provide fully furnished apartments that vary in size and amenities. An independent living community will also offer residents meal plans and a chance to participate in community social activities.
While some of these facilities are funded through public housing, most are private pay and vary greatly in cost.
Inpatient Skilled Rehab
Acute inpatient skilled rehab offers patients access to rehabilitation services and medical personnel close at hand to help transition from a surgery or medical crisis back to a more stable living situation.
This is never a long-term option. The length of stay can vary, but it usually lasts for two to four weeks. During this time, the patient is given a steady regimen of rehabilitative services and the peace-of-mind of having immediate medical care if the need for medical care should arise.
Inpatient skilled rehab is often covered by various insurances and Medicaid.
Skilled Home Health
Skilled home health care, or home health care, is care given by a registered nurse, licensed therapist, or other medical professional in a person’s home, rather than a medical facility.
This care is often not a long term solution because it is given as a part of their plan of care following an inpatient hospitalization, rehabilitation, or stay at a skilled nursing facility. This care is also often recommended for those who may have undergone a recent change to their plan of care that may impact their ability to complete daily activities or have suffered a decline or setback in their health and need medical rehabilitation to regain complete independence.
Home health care is often covered by insurance, Medicare, and Medicare, and is prescribed by a physician. In rare cases, it is also funded through private pay.
Non-Medical Home Care
Non-medical home care is in-home care that is less related to skilled medical treatment and more about companionship and assistance with activities of daily living (ADL’s).
Home care focuses on providing assistance to the client in their desire to maintain independence while remaining in the comforts of home. In-home Care usually centers on helping to complete daily activities such as showering, meal preparation, , and light housekeeping. Often caregivers or the agency also provides transportation to doctor appointments, the grocery store, or social activities outside of the home. These caregivers also provide quality companionship and someone to talk to, an often overlooked benefit that has a substantial impact on a senior’s health and quality of life.
Caregivers and aides in-home care are trained in the various aspects of senior care and are State-registered Nursing Assistants (STNA’s), Certified Nursing Assistances (CNA’s), or trained Home Health Aides (HHA’s). Some agencies do employ medical professionals to advise their caregivers when needed or to assist in plans of care with the family. It is ideal to have a medical professional, such as a Registered Nurse, to help devise a Plan of Care and oversee ongoing in-home care.
Home care is often a private pay service, but it can be covered by long-term care insurance, various Veterans’ benefits, and Medicaid for qualified low-income seniors.
Assisted living facilities are the best choice for seniors that would like to maintain their independence but are no longer able to keep up with day-to-day activities. This option is best for those who may need more extensive assistance but cannot afford private in-home care.
Assisted living guidelines vary from state-to-state, so it is always wise to check your state’s guidelines, but generally, they offer on-site nursing staff and caregivers. The will dispense medication, prepare meals, provide social activities, and do light housekeeping in a senior’s living space.
Assisted living facilities differ from nursing homes in that they are meant for seniors that are largely independent, meaning they have some ability to do things like feed, dress, and bathe themselves, but do require some additional assistance.
Assisted living facilities can be payed for through private pay, long term care insurance, or Medicaid for qualified low-income seniors.
Long Term Care – Nursing Home Care
Nursing home care is provided to seniors who need long term medical care and have lost the ability to maintain their independence. This loss of independence is often due to a decline in memory, mental faculties, or a physically debilitating event that is not reversible with time or rehabilitation.
Nursing home facilities offer around the clock licensed medical professionals, caregivers, and staff to help provide the best quality of life possible. Many facilities have areas or floors that are set-up for specific medical challenges such as Alzheimer’s, dementia, and varied levels of physical care as needed.
Nursing home care is often paid for by long term care insurance, private pay, or Medicaid for qualified low-income seniors.
Long Term Care – Hospice Care
Hospice care is designed for seniors that are in the advanced stages of an illness. It focuses on comfort and quality of life in the terminal stages of life.
Hospice care nurses are licensed and able to dispense medication to help ensure the comfort of their patients. They work closely with the senior’s physicians to keep them as alert as possible and to ensure that each day is as comfortable and life-affirming as possible.
Hospice care is usually covered by insurance and is doctor prescribed.