January 7, 2021

Top 8 Differences Between Assisted Living and Skilled Nursing

Should you choose assisted living or skilled nursing? It’s a question that could be bothering you because you may not know the difference between them. If you’re unsure which facility is right for you, you may find yourself at the wrong place; added to this, regrets. Here are the main issues that can help you make a smart choice to save you all the trouble. Below is a breakdown of the differences between these types of care for seniors.

Level of Need
Both skilled nursing and assisted living aim to help individuals pursue happier and healthier lives. However, the type of care and level of need makes them different. For example, if an individual needs daily therapy, artificial respiration (i.e., a ventilator), they would better opt for skilled nursing.

On the other hand, assisted living would be suitable for a person needing more straightforward tasks, such as social support, financial management, mental health (depression or isolation), etc. It’d be wise to seek professional help from your medical team or personal advisors to find a suitable facility for you.

Type of the Environment
An assisted living setting is more of a residential neighborhood than a skilled nursing home, a medical environment. The former emphasizes traditional nursing rehabilitation while assisted living is geared towards residential living; for instance, it may come in as a stand-alone cottage or a tall apartment. Notably, skilled nursing medical centers are also incorporating features of a residential center.

Staff Availability
According to the law, skilled nursing must have a registered health professional on-site for a minimum of 8 hours daily, seven days a week. In contrast, with assisted living, a licensed practical nurse and registered nurse are available on-call, and the law doesn’t require them to be on-site.

Duration of Stay
Skilled nursing is considered temporary for short-term assistance but assisted living is long-term because you want to enjoy life as usual. You’re also being helped with some challenging tasks such as dressing. Additionally, an individual would choose skilled nursing following hospitalization or an accident as they want to recuperate and go back to everyday life.

Residential Goal
The goal of assisted living is to provide independence to the resident with some assistance on specific tasks. On the other hand, skilled nursing focuses on rehabilitation after hospitalization and ensures that the resident restarts their life with ease.

Residents in skilled nursing need a lot of attention from health professionals, and as a result, they’ve got minimal freedom compared to assisted living individuals. Assisted living residents are free to control their schedules,  decide how often and to what degree they need help from their facility.

Since there’s 24/7 medical care for skilled nursing residents, they tend to bear more costs than assisted living occupants. The latter has fewer expenses each month.

Insurance coverage
Some skilled nursing residences participate in Medicare and Medicaid programs. Assisted living, however, may not be paid for with health insurance or Medicare programs; the residents foot the bill. Depending on where the assisted living residence is located, each state has its laws that spell out its coverage level. So, doing extensive research and seeking help is essential.

Need more information about assisted living? Assisted living in Orlando is ready to help.
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