The Care You Need: Who Qualifies for Assisted Living?

Is it surprising to learn that 70% of Americans over 64 years will need some level of long-term care? This figure looks at the care needed for the rest of these individuals’ lives.

Do you have a relative who’s having more trouble with activities of daily living (ADLs)? Are you concerned about their health and safety? Do you wonder what senior assisted living care facilities offer?

Assisted living facilities provide different care from nursing homes or skilled nursing facilities. They have rules for who qualifies for assisted living. Would you like to know, “Can my parent go into assisted living?”

Continue reading to learn about assisted living care and who qualifies. This may offer the care and comfort you’ve been looking for.

What Are Assisted Living Facilities?

group of eldersAssisted living offers nursing care, meals, and housekeeping for elderly or disabled people. They emphasize independent living, choice, and dignity. Yet residents can get help with ADLs such as bathing, laundry, running errands, and more.

Some facilities offer specialized memory care facilities. The expert staff optimizes daily life for those with dementia or Alzheimer’s Disease.

These long-term care settings provide a homelike feel instead of a nursing home. They offer a variety of social activities and outings. There are communal areas to promote socialization and foster a sense of community.

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Who Qualifies for Assisted Living?

There aren’t nationwide definitions for assisted living qualifications. Each state regulates and licenses assisted living facilities. Each institution chooses its care level within state guidelines.

Common assisted living facility qualifications include the following:

  • They must be mostly independent but may receive some help with bathing and dressing
  • They must be able to move around independently most of the time
  • They must not require ongoing medical attention

Residents can get help with cooking, some mobility needs, and taking medications.

Examples of Assisted Living Home Amenities

Elder man doing pushupsWhen exploring options for senior living facilities, you will find a range of amenities. The following describes some examples of options you may ask about:

  • Controlled access via a security gate and/or a sign-in system for visitors
  • Wireless emergency call system for residents to send an alert that they need help
  • Licensed nursing staff on-site or on-call to provide needed medical care
  • Front desk concierge service to answer calls and questions
  • Community transportation for medical visits, errands, or social outings
  • Planned social activities and events on-site and in the community
  • On-site hair, beauty, and barbershop services
  • On-site fitness room, pool, or sauna for resident use
  • On-site instructor-led fitness classes on a variety of levels
  • On-site wellness programs about nutrition, fitness, health, and wellbeing
  • Secure outdoor common space with seating and even communal gardens
  • On-site tech rooms with computers, printers, and other resources for residents
  • Wi-Fi access for residents in the facility and on the grounds
  • Laundry and linen services with a regular pick-up and drop-off schedule

Be sure to ask if these services are included in the monthly charge or if some services cost extra.

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How to Find Assisted Living Near Me

You can search online to find assisted living facilities near you. Look at comments or ratings about the different communities. Ask friends and co-workers if they have experience with any of the places you’re considering.

Most importantly, schedule an in-person tour. While you are there, pay attention to the physical appearance of the residents. Are they involved, clean, and happy?

Ask about the amenities and events available. Find out about their safety and security precautions. How can residents call someone if they need help?

Make a list of questions so that you don’t forget to ask something while you are there. Here are some tips to help you start your list:

  • Do residents receive regular health and wellness checks?
  • What happens if my loved one’s health condition gets worse?
  • What are all the costs and extra fees?
  • What methods of payment do you accept?
  • What is the staff to resident ratio?
  • Can family members call at any time to check on a resident?
  • What security measures do they have to protect residents from accidentally wandering off?
  • What amenities are available for the residents?

Do not feel embarrassed about asking questions. If the staff is reluctant to provide answers, you may want to look at other facilities.

Is Medicare Assisted Living an Option?

MedicaidMany seniors have Medicare to cover their health expenses. One big question is, “Does Medicare cover assisted living?” The answer is no.

There are other options that can help pay for assisted living. These include long-term care insurance, life insurance, and Veteran’s benefits.

Depending on your state, Medicaid may provide help paying for these services. No state pays for the room and board costs. Yet, some states offer supplemental Social Security to help cover assisted living costs.

Some states establish a maximum amount that the facility can charge. Others will pay for preparing food but not the cost to buy the food.

While a facility may accept Medicaid, you may have limited services or a long waiting list. For many families, it’s best to find an assisted living community that’s within their budget.

Are You Looking for an Assisted Living Facility?

This article answered the question, “Who qualifies for assisted living?” For those who live in and around the Valley Park, MO area, check out Cape Albeon Lakeside Retirement Living. We’re rooted in the 150-year Good Samaritan Home traditions and values.

We offer a spiritual difference that advocates all faiths and beliefs. We have retirement cottages for recreation and socialization. Our harbor retirement apartments offer a close-knit and friendly community. The Village includes assisted living apartments and memory care services.

Loved ones who need memory care will have expert staff providing individualized attention. We also offer respite care for individuals who need temporary help during an illness. This service gives caregivers time to rest before resuming the usual care routine.

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