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About Assisted Living Facilities

Often, many people over 60 years of age need special care, which is impossible to arrange at home for a number of reasons. At the same time, many of them prefer assisted living and move to one of the nursing homes. Over the past ten years, the demand for such institutions has grown rapidly. Here, residents are provided with comfortable accommodation, as well as the necessary medical care and rehabilitation assistance.

Assisted Living

What is assisted living?

Assisted living is a type of housing that provides a combination of housing, personal care services, and health care for people who need various levels of medical and personal care. Living spaces can be shared quarters, individual rooms and apartments. Such facilities provide a home-like setting and are designed to promote the resident’s independence.

Why can’t I take care of my elderly relatives on my own?

You can do it at home but your strengths are not always enough. If a loved one cannot dress or roll over in bed without your help, if he or she needs round-the-clock supervision, there are two ways: to hire an assistant or choose a social institution. Each of these options has its pros and cons. We need to weigh everything well.

What is better: a nurse or a nursing home?

Everything is very individual. The main advantage of the assistant is that the patient stays at home. After all, moving is a radical change and stress for an older person. But not all families can afford to hire a carer. But collecting all the necessary documents and receiving state assistance is not so simple. Sometimes it is really difficult to find qualified helpers and there is a high risk of running into an impostor or an incompetent person.

In addition, you may need several nurses. He or she may get tired, go on vacation and relax on the weekend. And one more nuance: every patient regardless of his or her condition needs communication and socialization. And this is not easy to arrange when a person is at home all the time.

In what cases do I need to seriously think about a nursing home?

If you do not have enough time, energy and skills to take care of your loved ones on your own, if you have not found a professional care specialist or if your relative needs not only care but also medical assistance (but not treatment in a hospital). But, as we have already said, moving to a nursing home is a stress, so it is important to talk to your loved ones about this as soon as possible, find out his or her opinion and, if possible, take into account his or her wishes. And also remember that a person needs time to get used to a new place and lifestyle. The more often you visit a relative, especially at first, the easier it will be for him or her to adapt.

Assisted living: is it expensive?

It all depends on the institution, they may be public and private. In state nursing homes, the patient gives 75% of his or her income (as a rule, this is only a pension) and is provided with everything necessary. Living in a good private nursing home may be quite expensive. And in the presence of diseases requiring additional care, the amount may double. If living in a private nursing home is too cheap, this should alert you.

What should I look for when choosing a nursing home?

First, do some preliminary research. Read reviews online. If you decide to choose only among private houses, carefully check their sites before you travel. Too low prices or discounts should cause suspicion. See if the company is registered. This is not a guarantee that everything is fine but it does mean that the institution was checked by officials and found it to be good.

Secondly, conduct reconnaissance on the spot. It is advisable to come to a nursing home without warning. Pay attention to two key points: attitude to patients and how their life is arranged. The staff should be polite, they should treat guests carefully and respectfully, knock on rooms, call patients by name and not talk about them in the third person. Walking, socialization (including patients with limited mobility) and, if possible, maintaining personal boundaries are important (for example, patients should use the toilet, not diapers). The administration should calmly respond to questions and not restrict visits to patients by relatives.

Pay attention to how many people live in the room, whether there are toilets and showers in the room, whether the room is adapted to the needs of patients with limited mobility and people with dementia. It’s bad if there are a lot of people living in the room, the toilet is shared on the floor, there are no handrails and ramps, and there are no functional beds with anti-decubitus mattresses for disabled patients and there is not enough space for wheelchairs. Another important point is safety, including fire safety.

Which doctors work in nursing homes?

Most boarding houses have only nurses and care specialists. But some nursing homes are more like hospitals and patients are provided with medical care. Doctors may come several times a week or work on the spot every day. These are specialists of both a broad and narrow profile: for example, there are institutions that have departments for people with serious memory problems, dementia. Sometimes different types of therapies are practiced: physical or speech.

Be sure to find out how patients are tested when admitted to assisted living housing. It is good if the specialists of the institution assess functional independence, the risks of falling and skin integrity, emotional state. In addition, you should be alerted if your relatives are not tested for infectious diseases.

What do people do in nursing homes?

It depends on the institution – each has its own program. Good nursing homes hold daily classes for residents, for example, to maintain fine motor skills and cognitive functions. They can teach residents to draw, knit or sing. They can organize concerts for the holidays, walk with residents once or twice a day. Residents can also always watch TV or even surf the Internet.

Can a person live in a nursing home for a while, not forever?

Yes, it is possible. Typically, nursing homes seek to conclude a long-term contract with a client but they also almost always take patients for a while, for example, while you are on vacation.

How often can I visit my relative?

It depends on the institution. In some types of assisted living, relatives can be visited only on certain hours and days, others do not restrict visits, and others ask you not to come during medical procedures.

Category: Health and Wellness

Tags: assisted living, healthcare, nursing, patients

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