Towards the end of life, seniors require more care than they can find at home or with family. That's when many seniors are moved into an old age home. There are a variety of these facilities, each with different levels of offered care. While each has varying requirements for its staff and residents, it's up to the senior and his family to decide which will be the best fit.
Types of Old Age Homes
When it comes to old age homes, there are a variety of living situations available based on how much care a resident needs. For seniors who require little outside assistance, there are independent living situations. These communities are often designed specifically for seniors, and are easily accessible and require little upkeep. They may also provide some assistance with tasks around the house. Assisted living homes are for seniors who require some care but are still somewhat independent. These are facilities that often offer apartment-style living and have a staff on-hand to help around the home and sometimes with medications. Nursing homes are for seniors who need the highest level of care, short of being admitted into a hospital. These centers offer custodial care, such as assistance getting in and out of bed, feeding, dressing and bathing.
According to Help Guide, Medicare (senior health insurance coverage) doesn't offer old age housing options besides nursing homes. Additionally, this insurance will cover only a limited stay when skilled nursing care is necessary. Medicaid (health insurance for those with limited income) can sometimes cover assisted living costs, but not nursing home care. No nursing home facility is required to accept Medicaid. In some areas, the Department of Housing and Urban Development will provide housing options for seniors who live under a certain income bracket.
There is a variety of staff needed to run old age homes, all requiring different levels of credentials. A nursing home will need a support staff, including clerks, cashiers/accountants, maids and a cook. A qualified nursing staff to care of the patients is also necessary. Some old age homes will have medical officers to tend to the patients' medical needs. Sometimes this is a doctor who visits the home on a part-time basis. Other beneficial employees can be a nutritionist or a social worker.
People may be placed in an old age home for a variety of reasons, whether it's due to a progressive disease or sudden change in family dynamics. While each old age home has its own requirements and suggestions for who should enter its facility, there are some questions family members of the senior can discuss before making a move. Consider if the senior needs more care than the current primary caregiver can offer, if the senior is safe in their current living situation and if the move to an old age home would be permanent or temporary.