When an older adult lives with a chronic illness or a disability, they're in need of support and care for daily help with meals, personal care, and other activities. The needs may not require an intensive level of care like that of nursing home, but a higher level than what's received at home.
Assisted living is part of a continuum of long-term care services that offers services, in combination, with housing, personal care services, and health care that help residents in need of assistance with daily activities in a way that promotes maximum independence.
Most states have departments or agencies that register, license, or certify, assisted living residences.
A resident receives a tailored care plan that helps each function safely within the assisted living facility. When the resident moves in, the staff develops a coordinated plan specifically aligned with each resident's needs. The agreement, which includes an assessment the resident's physical and psychosocial needs, reviewed and updated regularly by the staff, and as the resident's condition changes. The resident and family members play an active role in the service plan.
A resident care coordinator oversees the process of developing, implementing, and evaluating the progress of the service plan. The resident and family members receive copies of the service plan, if requested.
Assisted living provide supervision or assistance with activities of daily living (ADL's); coordination of services by outside health care providers or nursing care; short-term respite care, lodging, transportation, and monitoring of resident activities to help to ensure one's health, safety, and well-being.
The assisted living residence hires and trains the staff employed directly by them. Typical staff includes:
When asked if privately hired nurses, aides, or private duty nurses permitted to provide services to residents, 82% of the Residential Care Facilities reported Yes.
Here is a list of the regular services offered by facilities:
There are several reasons that older adults take advantage of short-term respite care from an assisted living facility.
In a study conducted by The Center for Disease Control in 2010, 73% of Residential Care Facilities reported that they do not provide short-term respite care services, while 27% of the facilities do offer short-term respite care.
Adult Day Care Centers provide care and companionship for seniors needing assistance or supervision during the day. It offers relief to family members or caregivers that gives them a much-needed break, to go to work, handle personal affairs or simply to relax.
In a study conducted by The Center for Disease Control in 2010, 89% of Residential Care Facilities reported that they do not provide adult day care services.
Skilled nursing is a type of nursing home care that offers long or short-term care for people needing rehabilitation or who suffer from serious health issues. A nurse or team of medical care staff cares for the resident.
In the CDC survey, 39% of the Residential Care Facilities provide skilled nursing services. Skilled nursing services performed by a registered nurse (RN), or a licensed practical nurse (LPN) and are medical in nature.
Occupational therapists (OTRs) help residents enjoy as much autonomy and independence as possible, depending upon their unique strengths and limitations.
OTRs help residents:
In the CDC survey, 40% of the Residential Care Facilities provide occupational therapy, but only 14% of the people performing the occupational therapy are employees of the facility.
Physical therapy helps residents maintain or improve their level of functioning that increases their activity and independence. Senior housing communities partner with healthcare providers who bring their expertise directly to the residents.
Physical therapy restores function for individuals who have neuromuscular or skeletal dysfunction. Individualized treatment includes:
In the CDC survey, 44% of the Residential Care Facilities provide physical therapy for residents, but only 17% of the people performing physical therapy are employees of the facility.
The health monitoring of residents offered by assisted living include:
96% of the Residential Care Facilities surveyed by The Center for Disease Control in 2010, provides basic health monitoring, such as blood pressure and weight checks and 85% of the facilities' that provide health monitoring use staff perform these checks.
65% of assisted living facilities do not offer social services counseling services to residents. Social services counseling is counseling related to obtaining and keeping benefits provided by programs such as Supplemental Security income, Social Security, and Medicaid.
Effectively caring for residents can be complex. A monthly case management program for residents monitors both clinical and social outcomes.
An organized approach of regular assessment of residents avoids crisis management, and improves the quality of the resident's experience in the senior living facility.
Case management tracks:
57% of facilities provide case management services.
It's a good idea to visit the assisted living facility during mealtime. The staff welcomes you to eat with the residents to see whether the food is good and fresh, and to evaluate the dining room service. Questions ask about meals:
In a study conducted by The Center for Disease Control in 2010, 93% of Residential Care Facilities provide special diets for residents.
In the same Center for Disease Control survey, 87% of the facilities that provide special diets are served by paid facility employees.
How many meals included in the monthly base rate? 98% of the facilities includes 3 meals a day in the monthly rate.
Are residents required to eat at a scheduled time? 58% reported Yes.
Does the facility serve meals in a specific location? 64% reported Yes.
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