How to Choose an Assisted Living Home
There are many factors to consider when choosing a nursing home or assisted living facility, and the three most important ones are whether you need memory care or incontinence care, whether you can prepare your own meals, and how you plan to pay for it. NursePartners discusses these three in detail.
Important Considerations Regarding You or Your Loved One’s Situation
Paying for long-term care
Medicaid long-term care benefits are limited, and the only way to receive a large amount of money from Medicare is if you have spent down your assets. In addition, most people do not want to be completely dependent on their children or others for their care. Paying for their own long-term care, either out of savings or by purchasing a long-term care insurance policy, is a more desirable option.
There are other ways to pay for nursing home costs:
Option 1: Selling a home to fund the stay: One option is to sell the house of a loved one so that they can receive care at an assisted living facility or nursing home. This could affect Medicaid coverage, so be sure to consult an attorney or Medicaid professional before making any decisions. It’s also important to start researching home prices in your area to get an idea of how much you can earn from a sale. In Philadelphia, expect around $275K for the sale of a family home.
Option 2: Receiving money through a reverse mortgage: Many seniors use their homes as collateral to get a reverse mortgage, which they can use for their long-term care. One of the advantages of getting a reverse mortgage is that there are no monthly payments and your heirs will inherit whatever is left after you die.
Will you or your loved one need memory care?
Memory care is a type of specialized assisted living that is considered to be the most intensive level of care. It’s often reserved for people with Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, or other forms of dementia. Memory care facilities typically have a tight ratio between the number of residents and staff members so that caregivers are able to give individual attention to each resident.
If you or a loved one needs memory care, it’s important to research your options and visit the facilities that are available, which will allow you to get a feel for how each home operates. If a facility doesn’t have any openings in their memory care unit because they’re full, don’t automatically discount them as an option. You can still inquire about moving your loved one into a regular assisted living room while a memory care unit opens up.
Can you prepare your own meals?
Assisted living facilities and nursing homes are often home to people who can no longer prepare their own meals. If you or your loved one is capable of preparing your meals, this should be an important consideration for choosing the right facility. This will allow you to maintain your independence.
There are many assisted living facilities that will cook your meals for you, which can be a good option if you or your loved one doesn’t feel up to cooking. If this is something that’s important to you, be sure to ask questions about whether the facility offers this.
Choosing the right assisted living home can be a difficult process, but you should feel confident that you’re making the best decision for your situation with these considerations in mind. Be sure to take into account whether or not your loved one will need memory care or incontinence care and if they can prepare their own meals before choosing a facility. While it’s important to visit facilities so that you can get an idea of how each operates, don’t rule out any possibilities just because they are full at first glance – inquire about other options instead.
Of course, there’s still no place like home. If you or your loved one prefer to age in place, explore your home care options from NursePartners today!
This article was contributed by Donna Erickson.