Many changes take place throughout the aging process. These are sometimes the result of a diagnosis such as Alzheimer’s. At other times, they develop after an acute illness, surgery or other hospitalization changes a senior’s capabilities when it comes to managing daily needs. This is typically the time when families first start discussing the senior’s long term goals, safety and comfort. For some, the idea of moving their loved one to a long term care facility is appealing. While nursing homes and assisted living facilities do offer support and assistance with a variety of healthcare needs, at times, aging in place is the best solution.

A Shortage of Long Term Care Beds

An article in Forbes Magazine discussed why many nursing homes are moving away from providing long term care beds. Instead, they are moving toward supporting shorter term stays and rehabilitation. The reason for this is simple; few seniors can afford the out of pocket expenses incurred when they choose institutional care. These costs can range from $37,000 to $200,000 per year. For many, that is simply out of reach. This is especially true for those living on a fixed income and with minimal savings. As a result, a high number of long term care beds are paid for through the Medicaid program, and reimbursement is limited to $125 per day. Medicare, however, covers the cost of short term rehabilitation. This program’s reimbursement rate to facilities is $500 to $600 per day. It is simply more cost effective and profitable for facilities to maintain a higher number of rehabilitation beds.

Finding the Right Placement Facility

With the decline in the number of long term care beds, seniors are having an increasingly difficult time finding space in high quality, reputable facilities. This, in addition to their stated desire to age in place, makes in home care the more appealing choice. Through an accredited agency like Salus Homecare San Diego, seniors or their family members simply make one call to our office. They are then immediately connected with a care manager who can assess their needs and arrange quality, reliable in home care.

In Home Care – A Customized Care Solution

Another way in which in home care and home health services are a better solution is the customization these programs offer seniors. When budget is a consideration, seniors benefit by utilizing services only when they need them. For some, this might mean around the clock care is the right choice. For others, a few hours a week or other part-time care arrangements work best. Services are also provided on a one-on-one basis and directed by a personalized plan of care. This makes it easier for seniors to get the help they need while still maintaining independence on tasks they are safe and comfortable performing alone.

The Emotional Benefits of In Home Care

Finally, a senior’s state of mind and emotional health benefit from in home care. Remaining at home often provides purpose. This choice also makes it easier for seniors to remain close to family members, friends and neighbors. Home is often the only option for a senior who wants to keep a beloved pet, larger pieces of heirloom furniture or a significant collection of photographs and personal memorabilia. Empowering a senior to make choices about where they spend time enhances quality of life and instills dignity. It  can even help a senior to heal faster and make significant improvements toward regaining complete independence. With professional home care services, seniors are often able to remain at home even with a medical diagnosis or after a health setback. For many, this option means safely aging in place for a longer period of time.

Meeting the needs of an aging loved one is not always easy. However, it is important to remember that choices are available. While long term care facilities offer a convenient option for some families, in home care is often the preferred choice because of the cost saving benefits and increased feelings of dignity and independence. If you are struggling with these choice, Salus Homecare San Diego is here to help. Call our office to arrange a complimentary, no obligation evaluation and discuss your personalized plan of care.

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