Pros and Cons – Nursing Home vs. Assisted Living Facility

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Nursing Home PlanningWhen the time comes for you or a family member to move into a facility because you require assistance with your personal care and/or medical care, making the decision between an Ohio nursing home and an Ohio assisted living facility can be difficult. A nursing home and an assisted living facility both have pros and cons. Sometimes, the pros and cons of each choice depend on the unique facts and circumstances of your situation.

Our Ohio nursing home attorneys can help you and your family as you try to decide between a nursing home and an assisted living facility by reviewing the pros and cons of each type of facility. We can also help you plan for the eventual move to a nursing home or assisted living facility to protect your assets and take advantage of the benefits provided by Medicaid.

What are the Differences Between a Nursing Home and an Assisted Living Facility?

The first step in choosing between a nursing home and an assisted living facility is understanding the difference between these two long-term care options. The main difference between the two facilities is the level and type of care provided. Nursing homes provide 24/7 medical and personal care to individuals who have chronic medical conditions that do not require hospitalization but do require constant, supervised care.

On the other hand, an assisted living facility also provides health care; however, it is limited. An assisted living facility offers some support services and medical care; however, it is not 24/7 and it is not as comprehensive as a nursing home. An assisted living facility typically provides at least two meals a day, daily check-in for the residents, weekly cleaning services, and some assistance with daily activities.

Pros and Cons of a Nursing Home

The pros and cons of choosing a nursing home include:

  • Nursing homes provide full-time care for patients. Staff provides personal care and medical care 24/7 for patients who need constant and continued monitoring and assistance.
  • Nursing homes can be expensive; however, with adequate Medicaid planning and nursing home planning, you can make a nursing home more affordable.
  • Nursing homes provide structured schedules including all meals and interactive, social events for the residents. For patients who need regular medications or benefit from a regular schedule, nursing homes are a good choice.
  • On the other hand, you definitely have a lack of freedom when you live in a nursing home. You are subject to the nursing home’s schedule and strict rules regarding visitors. Even your ability to come and go as you please may be limited.
  • Nursing homes provide social events to keep residents active, entertained and engaged.
  • Nursing home abuse is a problem in America. Personal injury attorneys handle thousands of cases involving nursing home injuries each year. You can reduce the risk of nursing home abuse by visiting your family member on a regular basis and making unannounced, random visits to the nursing home at all hours. If you suspect nursing home neglect, contact our office immediately.

Pros and Cons of Choosing an Assisted Living Facility

The pros and cons of choosing an assisted living facility include:

  • Assisted living facilities provide more privacy and freedom for residents compared to a nursing home. Residents retain more autonomy in an assisted living facility.
  • An assisted living facility has more “home like” features than a room in a nursing home. You feel as if you are living in your own apartment rather than sharing a room in a hospital.
  • Some assisted living facilities are less expensive than a nursing home.
  • Medicare does not typically cover any of the expense of an assisted living facility; however, Medicaid coverage could apply, and some long-term care insurance and other programs offer financial assistance to pay for assisted living facilities.
  • Like nursing homes, most assisted care facilities have an active social calendar that keeps residents involved and interacting with other residents.
  • While assisted living facilities offer some medical and personal care, they do not offer the comprehensive care that some individuals need.
  • Assisted living facilities are not regulated by the federal or state government as nursing homes are regulated.

Do Your Due Diligence When Choosing a Long-term Care Facility

Before you make a final decision regarding where you or a loved one will reside, research the facility’s record and history. Check with local, state, and federal agencies for a history of complaints. Research any lawsuits filed against the facility and/or its staff members. Speak with current residents and request to speak to their family members.

Spend time at the facility in addition to making unannounced visits at various times during the day and night. Ask about issues such as security, medical staff, personal care staff, resident background checks, and policies to protect the residents. By taking time to research the facility, you may be able to avoid a tragic event in the future.

Are You Considering a Nursing Home or Assisted Living Facility for Yourself or a Loved One?

If you are trying to decide between a nursing home and an assisted living facility, our attorneys can help. We have extensive experience in estate planning, Medicaid planning, and nursing home planning. Our elder law attorneys can help you decide which facility is best to meet your needs or the needs of your loved one.

Contact our office by calling our Springfield, Dayton, or Tipp City office or using our online contact form to schedule a free case evaluation. We want to help you make the best decision for you and your family.

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