What Is a Nursing Home?
A nursing home is a long-term care facility that provides 24/7 medical care to patients who require assistance with daily living activities. Nursing home residents often have an illness or injury requiring ongoing medical treatment, such as a broken hip, COPD, or Alzheimer’s disease.
Types of Nursing Homes
Depending on the type of care you or your loved one needs, there are different types of nursing homes to choose from. Once you’ve decided that a nursing home is the best setting for your care, you may wonder: What type of nursing home is best for me?
Long-term care facilities: Long-term care facilities are for patients who require medical care and assistance with activities of daily living for at least 90 days. This type of facility is meant for people who need close monitoring and cannot be cared for in their homes.
Skilled nursing facilities: Skilled nursing facilities are meant for patients requiring more intensive care, including rehabilitation services after surgery or long-term conditions such as COPD or Alzheimer’s.
Specialty nursing facilities: Specialty nursing facilities tend to be smaller facilities that specialize in providing care for a specific population, such as those who are deaf or blind.
What to Consider When Looking for a Nursing Home?
There are several factors to consider when choosing a long-term care facility. The following questions can help you evaluate potential nursing homes and find the best fit for you or your loved one.
Proximity to family and friends: This may seem like a small detail, but it can greatly impact your quality of life. Consider how close the facility is to family members who can visit regularly and your support network.
Amenities: Does the facility have the amenities you want? If you like to stay active, you may want to find a facility with a gym or walking trails. If you prefer more quiet activities, a facility with an on-site library or game room may be perfect for you.
Cost of care: The cost of care in a nursing home varies greatly by region. It’s important to research the average cost of assisted living in your area to find a facility that fits your budget. Luckily, there are tools online to help you estimate what your costs will be.
Level of care offered: When choosing a facility, ensure that the level of care offered is appropriate for your needs. You may consider a shorter-term stay at a skilled nursing facility if you are expected to recover quickly from surgery or injury.
How to Pay for Nursing Home Costs?
The cost of long-term care is rising across the country, and in many cases, families are left responsible for covering the costs of their loved one’s care. There are several ways to cover long-term care costs, including insurance policies, long-term care insurance, trusts, annuities, home equity, and family support.
1. Insurance policies: This is a great way to offset some care costs if you have long-term care insurance. Many long-term care insurance policies cover both in-home and nursing home care costs.
2. Long-term care insurance: Long-term care insurance is designed to help cover the cost of care at a nursing home.
3. Trusts: If you have substantial assets in your estate, you may consider setting up a trust to help pay for long-term care costs.
4. Annuities: Annuities are another way to help fund long-term care costs. You can purchase a long-term care annuity to help cover the costs of nursing home care.
5. Home equity: If you own your home, you may be able to access the equity in your home to help pay for long-term care costs.
6. Family support: Family support can take many forms, including help with transportation, caregiving, and estate planning.
Long-term care facilities provide medical care and assistance with daily living tasks such as dressing, eating, and hygiene to patients who cannot care for themselves. When choosing a long-term care facility, it’s important to consider proximity to family and friends, amenities, cost of care, and level of care offered. Find a facility that best meets your needs and offers the support and services you want to lead a happy and healthy life.