Affordable Nursing Info for Your Senior Family Member
Choosing to put a loved one into a nursing facility for care is a difficult decision. However, there are many good reasons to do so. Many elderly people become difficult to care for in their own home due to medical fragility, accessibility issues, or safety concerns. When you choose a facility, you need to make sure it is somewhere you are confident will provide the highest quality of care.
Steps to Choosing a Skilled Nursing Facility
The first step in choosing a facility is deciding what type of facility would be the best fit. There are many different types of senior care facilities. The most common types are Skilled Nursing Facilities, Assisted Living Communities, and Independent Living Communities. Within those facilities are also often Memory Care Units.
A Skilled Nursing Facility, or SNF, is meant for those residents whose medical needs require constant medical care. A nurse will be on-site 24 hours a day, and a doctor is available on-call at all times. If your loved one requires the use of a ventilator, a feeding tube, IV medications, or similar nursing measures, they generally have no other choices besides SNF for their long-term care needs.
A SNF room will generally be a simple affair. There are usually two beds, a closet or wardrobe each, and a sink. Depending on the facility, the bathroom may be for the room or shared with the room next door. Shower facilities will often be in another part of the facility, shared by all of the residents.
Any senior who is severally medically fragile should consider moving into a SNF first. While the idea of living in a glorified hospital room for the rest of their life seems depressing, it really is the best choice for their health and safety. There is a higher level of nursing care available for residents than in any other type of facility short of a hospital.
Assisted Living Community
An Assisted Living Community, or ALC, is for those residents who require assistance to manage their daily activities such as dressing themselves, taking medication, toileting, or preparing meals. An ALC generally has 24-hour assistance provided by non-licensed staff (“aides”), and nurses available during the day to check on resident needs.
A good ALC will be more home-like than a skilled facility. Most of them appear like apartment buildings with large, communal dining and activity areas. Generally, the rooms are suites, with enough space for a bedroom and a living area, with a private bathroom (including shower) for each room or pair of rooms.
An assisted living community is the right choice for someone who can’t manage to keep themselves dressed and clean on a daily basis without some assistance. Seniors who can regularly care for themselves but suffer from frequent falls or other medical issues might also consider these communities.
Here’s an in-depth look at how to go about making this choice.
Independent Living Community
The next type of facility is an Independent Living Community. These communities are just that – collections of seniors living independently as a community. They usually have apartments or condos with kitchens and full bathrooms, though communal dining may also be available. Assistance with daily activities is usually not provided as part of the package but can be provided for extra cost or from an outside provider. Residents will need to manage their own medical needs.
Within each type of long-term care facility, you may also find Memory Care Units. These units are designed for residents with varying levels of dementia. Choosing a MCU is dependent on two major factors: safety and programs. Safety is about dementia sufferers who have a history or propensity of wandering off, attacking caregivers they don’t recognize, starting fires trying to cook food and other issues of that nature. Programming is the types of activities offered in a memory care unit; a good facility will offer lots of activities to keep the dementia patients happy, occupied, and engaged.
Choosing the right type of facility is absolutely vital to making sure your loved one receives appropriate care. Putting someone who requires a memory care unit into an independent living facility, for example, could spell disaster when they wander unsupervised from their apartment and end up getting lost. And someone who needs more medical care will not be safe or happy in an assisted living facility, no matter how high-quality or home-like it may seem to you.
Here is a video that is very informative:
It can become overwhelming when a spouse or loved one becomes ill. For those times when you cannot be there to care for them it may be necessary to seek help from a home health agency. Affordable Nursing Inc. has a proven track record at being one of the most reliable in the field.
Affordable Nursing and its professional staff is there to help you every step of the way. Our in-home support services and hands-on personal approach to every case help us to develop long-term and caring relationships with our clients. We become an extended member of your family.