CCRC or Life Plan communities offer varied opportunities for healthy active seniors who wish to remain active and involved in a close communal setting with their age group. These communities offer many amenities like fitness center, swimming pools, golf course and many interactive clubs like Drama Club, Bridge Club, Book Club, Art Club etc.
The members of these communities also make up for a strong and active Residents’ Council.
Most of these communities require a one-time entrance fee which may or may not be refundable with some conditions. It is very important to review their entrance fee structure which could be anywhere from $150,00 and more.
Considering the comfort and facilities, these remain affordable assisted living facilities.
When choosing a CCRC or Life Plan Community one needs to look for the following;
- Physical Environment
- Levels of Care
- Resident and Staff Interaction
- Affordable Senior Housing
- Dining Services
- Care and Service Record of the Management
- Reviews about the Community
NURSING HOMES AND REHABILITATION CENTERS
Nursing Homes are homes for those who are too sick or too frail to live at home.
The first group includes those patients who have medical conditions which can not be and/or permitted to be cared for in Assisted Living facilities. This group requires around the clock skilled nursing care under the direction of a Physician.
The second group consists of those who are elderly and frail. They are at Nursing Homes permanently.
Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance and personal assets pays for Nursing Home stay.
Rehabilitation centers are especially geared to helping/rehabilitating individuals who are recovering from surgery or a major life changing event.
When choosing a Nursing Home or a Rehabilitation Center one needs to look for the following;
- A call to the local area Long Term Care Ombudsman Program would help greatly.
- It is also helpful to visit DHMH (Department of Health and Mental Hygiene) website to review survey reports and violations (if any) of all licensed facilities.
- Certification and Licensure; levels of certifications such as long/short term nursing care, memory care including Medicare and Medicaid, and License of the administrator etc.
- Resident to staff (RNs, CNAs) ratio and their education and training
- Programs and Recreation Offered
- Dining Services
- Fees and Costs
These communities are located in apartments and condos which may look like a regular high rise apartment building. They are meant for single family older adults. These buildings provide special services like security, concierge services, transportation to shopping centers, social clubs and various in-house activities. And also offer varied amenities. They are a perfect option for a comfortable and safe and social lifestyle.
Most of the Independent Living communities are rental communities. Although, there are condominiums where you purchase a unit and also may pay a condo fee.
Fees and costs vary depending upon the particular by-laws and regulations of a community. Some communities charge a set monthly fee and some charge fee-for-service.
Choosing an Independent Living community
- Independent communities are a boon for those who have the need for the following services
- Companionship of older adults
- Help with driving and keeping your appointments
- Help with household chores, cooking and maintenance
- Wish to pursue an active and social life
Assisted Living communities are the lynchpins in the care of our seniors these days. They are licensed by DHMH (Department of Health and Mental Hygiene):
All assisted living communities provide assistance with;
- Activities of daily living (ADLs) personal care, some would provide incontinence care as well, especially the smaller facilities
- Medication management
- Coordination of services by outside providers
- Recreational and Spiritual activities
- Housekeeping and maintenance
- Meals and snacks
- Make arrangements for varied medical, dental, transportation and social needs
- Exercise and wellness program
- Individualized services
Assisted Living fees and costs are not covered by Medicare. Nevertheless, there is a State funded program which pays up-to $2,600 per month which makes it an affordable senior housing option. This program has a number of qualifying conditions, most significant one is, the applicant must not have more than $2,500 in savings and/or assets. After a person is deemed qualified for the program she/he must wait in a que for her/his turn to get funded. Based on the current wait list it could take six to seven years to actually get the funds.
To the best of my knowledge, only the small assisted living facilities accept residents with Medicaid Waiver Program. When we say small, we are referring to facilities licensed for five to eight beds.
Seniors usually fund their assisted living expenses through;
- Long Term Care Insurance Policy
- Life Insurance Policy
- Reverse Mortgage
- Personal savings
- Sale of personal residence
- Assistance from family or some special grant
Choosing an Assisted Living
It is important to be mindful of the following options;
- Physical environment
- Resident to staff ratio
- Affordable assisted living
- Dining Services
- Recreational Activities and Programs
- Overall Impression
When choosing for the best Life Plan communities for your loved ones, choose the best Continuing Care Retirement Community- Alfredhouse. They not only offer Affordable Senior Housing, but give you continued care and a life-long support.
For more information, log onto: http://alfredhouse.com/