There is a shift away from providing long-term care services in hospitals and nursing homes to proving them in individuals’ homes. This was happening before the pandemic, but the trend is now accelerating for several reasons. Many nursing homes did not allow visitors for months during the pandemic, understandably leading to many worried families and lonely older people. Many COVID-19 deaths have occurred in nursing homes and those who were not infected often experienced long periods of isolation. This pandemic will lead many people to question whether there’s a better way to provide care to the elderly, and more are considering moving long-term care into the home.
How Does Receiving Long-Term Care At Home Work?
Instead of receiving care at an assisted living facility or nursing home, many people can receive help with daily living activities at home—these including eating, bathing, toileting, dressing, and mobility. A trained professional, such as a nurse, can give home health care and provide services like physical therapy, IV treatment, or dispending medication. Caregivers can also give non-medical care. This can mean help with anything from driving to appointments and picking up groceries to doing light yard work.
Ways to Make Aging In Place Easier
When it comes to aging in place, some small changes can help, like replacing deep-pile carpeting and installing no-slip flooring. Reducing home maintenance by installing LED lights that last longer and replacing fixed shelves with roll-out shelves can also help. Bigger changes to the home like widened doorways to accommodate wheelchairs and a first-floor bedroom can be done as needed.
The move towards aging in place may be one way that America’s aging population will shape the future. If you have elderly parents or know someone who does, you know that there are many hard decisions to make. Caregiving, or simply figuring out how an elderly parent will be cared for, can be difficult and time consuming. And figuring out the finances can be even harder. Nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and at-home care can all be expensive. The 2019 median annual cost for a home health aid for 44 hours a week was $52,624. If you’re thinking about how you will finance your own care down the road, we can help you plan for those costs. A long-term care plan is an important part of a comprehensive retirement plan and can be customized to the individual. Talk with us to find out about your options.