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Assisted Living vs. A Nursing Home: What’s the Difference?

zeth@greatnessdigital.com January 15, 2016

confusedWhat are the factors to be considered when choosing between assisted living and a nursing home? First, let us understand why someone might want to live in an assisted living facility or a nursing home. Usually, when seniors decide that assisted living or nursing homes are the next step for them, their children will go visit several facilities. So the information given here is as much for the children as it is for the seniors.

There could be several reasons to consider assisted living or placement in a nursing home. Perhaps the patient has been limited by a physical disability or chronic disease, which makes performing routine activities such as walking, bathing, dressing, and cooking next to impossible.

It is possible that they have been diagnosed with psychiatric disorders such as dementia, anxiety, or depression, and suffer from frequent bouts of confusion or disorientation. This could make it very difficult for them to manage their finances confidently.

Maybe the children are concerned about their parents’ ability to take medication as directed by a physician. The seniors may lack a proper support system, which is so critical. Maybe the children live in another state or even country, and there’s no one they can call to assist in an emergency.

If any of the information given here is relevant to your parents’ or grandparents’ situation, then you should consider assisted living or placement in nursing home for them. So, what’s the difference between assisted living and nursing homes? Let’s find out.


senior coupleAssisted Living Facilities

Assisted living facilities are not licensed to provide nursing care. They are basically places where elders live together in a supervised community, with access to personal care services. Elders are given meals on time and helped with routine tasks such as bathing and dressing.

Seniors are provided with a healthy and safe social environment where they get to interact on a daily basis with their peers. This helps to prevent social isolation, which is dangerous as it leads to depression.

Assisted living is not covered by health insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid. It may be covered by a long-term care insurance policy. Generally, the cost of assisted living is paid for by the seniors or by their children and grandchildren. The costs vary widely depending on the type of care and services provided to them.

Nursing Homes

Nursing homes are licensed to provide medical supervision and rehabilitation therapy. Nursing home residents are generally very old and they rely on assistance with most day-to-day activities such as bathing, dressing, toileting, meals, etc. Nursing homes are licensed by the state and are certified, too.

Nursing homes are covered by private health insurance policies and are covered by Medicare or Medicaid only under certain circumstances. Costs depend on the services provided as well as the level of care.

This information was brought to you by Right Fit Senior Living Solutions. Right Fit Senior Living Solutions is a senior placement company that serves the Beaverton and Portland area. We help you find the right senior living solution to meet your needs, which could be assisted living, memory care, in-home care, or anything in between. Call us at 503-567-7268 or email Liz@RightFitSenior.com to know more.

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