Right Kind of Care
Senior Housing/Independent Living
Senior housing, also called independent living, is ideal
for seniors able to live on their own or with minimal support.
This service may offer or arrange for supplementary support
services such as emergency call systems, meals, or transportation.
Personal Care or Companion Care
A personal care or companion care aid assists seniors in
their homes with activities such as dressing, grooming, meals,
shopping, housekeeping and transportation to appointments.
Other activities may include weight monitoring and managing
Home care includes medical and/or personal care services
provided in an individual’s home. Home care is wide-ranging,
from personal care services that provide grooming, shopping
and meal preparation to nursing and therapy services. Home
care may be augmented by many different types of community
Seniors have many different options for community services,
ranging from Meals on Wheels and nutrition sites to transportation.
For a full listing of community services in your area, contact
your county Office of the Aging or Senior Services. Increasingly,
adult day care and respite services offer seniors the ability
to remain at home while taking advantage of some services
normally offered by senior care providers.
Adult Day Care
Adult Day Care is appropriate for a person whose needs are
ordinarily met by their own family members, especially when
those family members may work outside of the home during the
day but are generally at home in the evenings and on weekends.
There are two models of adult day care:
Social model adult day care is oriented toward
the social aspects of life and may include games, memory orientation
and exercises, music, dancing and reading in a supervised
Medical model adult day care has a strong
medical component. It is usually staffed by at least one full-time
registered nurse able to administer medicine and perform routine
medical tasks. There is on-site physician back-up when needed.
Respite services provide temporary overnight care for ill
or disabled older adults for a few days or weeks. It gives
caregivers a short break from their duties, whether for personal
or medical reasons.
Assisted Living/Adult Care Facility Services
Assisted living (also called adult care facilities or enriched
housing) is a good option for seniors who can still live independently,
but need some assistance with bathing and dressing, medication
management, housekeeping, and shopping. Meals are usually
offered in a central dining area, often with special dietary
needs addressed. Assisted living also offers 24-hour supervision.
This category offers a wide range of services among different
facilities, and can accommodate a wide range of seniors as
Skilled Nursing Facilities
Skilled nursing facilities are the best option for people
who need 24-hour nursing care. Stays may be short term or
long term. Dietary, social activities and therapy services
are often provided, and a special care program is set up for
each individual. Another option for persons in need of this
level of care is the long term home health care program.
Long Term Home Health Care Program
The long term home health care program is a specialized
certified home care agency that offers care to individuals
who require nursing facility level of care but who are able,
and choose, to remain in their homes. This program is sometimes
referred to as a “Nursing Home Without Walls.”