National Long Term Care Planning Month
Do you feel confident about your plan for the future?
October is National Long Term Care Planning Month, the ideal opportunity to consider a strategy for the future. According to the National Institute on Aging, when considering long term care, think about assistance with activities of daily living like grooming, dressing and bathing as well as services like meals and transportation. This help may be needed after a health setback, disability, hospitalization or as part of the natural aging process and can involve a change in senior living arrangements to make sure an older adult stays safe.
Dementia is the leading condition that requires a person to seek long term care, along with medical concerns like Parkinson’s disease, stroke and osteoarthritis. Long term care helps seniors over an extended duration and making sure to plan for the possibility of needed long term care for the future is important, especially if you have a family or personal history for any of these conditions.
Because life can change in an instant, planning for the future can make challenging times easier to manage for both seniors and their families. The Department of Health and Human Services reports that approximately 60% of people will need basic assistance with activities of daily life. Determine how prepared you are for the possibility of long term care by reviewing the following:
Look at the financial situation: Saving for the future, especially funds earmarked for long term care, is important. As Medicare usually covers costs related to medical care and rehab, it is important to make sure that daily activity assistance is also covered. Long Term Care Insurance is one way to make extended care affordable.
Consider care needs now: As a loved one ages, health changes can arise over time, from the need for help around the house or with mobility. Memory concerns are another factor to consider. Talking about health changes with an aging loved one can feel awkward and slightly uncomfortable but easier to tackle when you notice red flags rather than in the midst of a medical crisis.
Become an expert on senior care options: One of the biggest stressor for families and seniors is scrambling after a medical setback to find senior care options. By understanding what each type of community offers to their residents, you are better able to feel prepared for the future. The types of communities include:
- Independent Living Communities: If your loved one needs more socialization than simply living at home but doesn't require regular medical services, this is ideal.
- Assisted Living Communities: This type of residential facility offers assistance with daily activities for seniors who are able to get around independently.
- Memory Care: Designed for seniors who have an Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis or for someone with middle to late stage memory conditions, these units are often found in larger assisted living facilities or smaller residential settings.
- Nursing Home: Providing skilled nursing services of a physician, nurse, social worker, physical therapist, occupational therapist or respiratory therapist, nursing homes offer the highest care environment.
One of the most proactive things you can do when it comes to future planning is to talk to a CarePatrol Senior Care Advisor. They are the experts on local communities. By asking the right questions, they are able to match a senior with the top three communities that fit their needs. We vet the communities that we recommend, take you on tours and help make move-in day less stressful. There is no cost for our services for seniors or their families. With 30 years of giving families peace of mind, CarePatrol would love to help you in your future planning.