Options for Long-Term Care

In many ways, growing older is not easy. Neither is choosing the right long-term care solution. The range of options vary from complete in home care to skilled nursing facilities. The resources you have to pay for your care, will in part guide the choices you have for long-term care, including individual care, boarding homes, assisted living, nursing homes, among others. The following are some common options for long-term care needs.

Long-Term Care Facilities and Communities

Personal In-Home Care. In-home care can range from full time, live-in nursing professionals to periodic care provided by private services and not-for-profit organizations. Personal in-home care is highly desirable for many, but equally as expensive and often cost prohibitive. Because in-home care can be an effective solution for the health of an individual, some states have implemented options for staying home while receiving Medicaid benefits.

Residential Care Facilities. If personal in-home care is not an option, another consideration is a community setting with private or shared rooms, with community activities and dining. These settings can feel more like home while offering an a greater level of care than independent living. A similar option includes apartment type facilities for seniors that support independence while providing a safer environment and access to care as needed. Residential care facilities are typically not as expensive as full service nursing homes; however, because residential care facilities are not qualifying nursing facilities, they are typically not covered by Medicaid.

Continuing Care Retirement Communities and Assisted Living. Continuing care retirement communities can serve an individual’s evolving needs for care and assistance. These facilities have various settings and may include independent living options as a point of entry into the community, followed by assisted and advanced care as the resident’s health and condition change over time. Depending on the community, costs can vary and include substantial upfront fees or commitments.

Skilled Nursing Facilities. Skilled nursing facilities are an advanced care option for those requiring a monitored environment, ready access to constant medical care, and community programing. Life in a skilled facility can be highly structured and vary from facility to facility. Skilled nursing facilities can be expensive and quickly reduce a resident’s savings and assets.

Long-Term Care Planning
Planning for the eventual need for long-term care is one of the principle objectives in an elder estate plan. With the help of an elder estate planning attorney, you can implement strategies to help pay for your care while preserving your assets, which can include long-term care insurance and Medicaid planning. Depending on your circumstances and choice of care alternatives, you will need to start taking action many years before you actually need the services of a long-term care facility or service.

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