Your once-independent parent is now having trouble caring for themselves properly and you know it's time to help them transition to a senior care facility. A nursing home or an assisted living facility are two of the best options. However, how do you know which is right for your parent? Here are a few differences between assisted living and nursing homes, which can help you determine which is the better option for your parents.
Level of Care
One of the biggest differences between a nursing home and assisted living facility is the level of care and medical attention your parent will be provided with. For example, in an assisted living facility, your parent will be provided a minimal amount of personal care, which includes helping them bathe, dress themselves, clean up after themselves, and prepare and eat their own meals.
Assisted living has a more apartment-like feel, but there is medical care available if required. However, there is no dedicated doctor on-site. Instead, there are other health care providers to handle any emergencies, and your parent will be given the care they require off-site at a hospital.
A nursing home provides a higher level of care and is intended for individuals who cannot perform basic functions on their own. This includes individuals who have suffered a major medical crisis such as a heart attack, are suffering from a lifelong condition, or simply cannot care for themselves. There is more dedicated medical staff on-site, including physicians.
The level of care is greater at a nursing home, and this includes the rooms in which residents live. The resident's room or suite is constructed like a hospital room, complete with a hospital bed and any monitors or equipment the residents require. There are opportunities for social interaction and residents are encouraged to enjoy activities with their fellow residents.
An assisted living facility provides more freedom. The residents live in a separate room or suite that has a more apartment-like feeling. There are typically community rooms, dining rooms, and scheduled activities.
Finally, because a nursing home features doctors and other health care professional on-site at all times, state or federal insurance will cover a portion or the entirety of the cost. In most cases, the costs associated with assisted living facilities are not covered by Medicare or other federal insurance programs. However, a portion or all the costs can be covered by private or long-term care insurance policies.
Understanding the differences between assisted living and nursing home facilities is critical to determine which option is best for your aging parent. Talk to a senior assisted care center to learn more.