When it’s time to start looking for short-term or long-term care for an aging parent or loved one, understanding terminology is important. For example, it’s helpful to know the difference between nursing homes and assisted living facilities or skilled nursing facilities when doing your research. Once you understand the distinction, you’ll have a better idea of what to look for based on you or your loved one’s exact needs.

The level of independence and medical care of each person differs, and so should the personal care they receive while residing in an assisted living facility or nursing home.

We’re here to guide you in the right direction. In preparation for the future, take the time necessary to learn more about each option, and the services that senior care and senior living communities can provide.

What is the difference between a nursing facility and a skilled nursing facility?

When hearing the terms nursing facility and skilled nursing facility, a person may have difficulty distinguishing between the two, yet there’s a considerable difference between them and educating yourself will benefit you and your family in the long run.

What is a nursing facility?

Nursing homes provide around-the-clock care for residents who need help with everyday living tasks. If your parent or loved one needs assistance bathing, getting dressed or eating, then a nursing home is likely the right fit.

A nursing home provides everyday non-medical, personal care services for their residents. These types of services include meal preparation, laundry assistance, room cleaning, and recreational activities. Medical care will vary for each resident, with some requiring more medical care than others.

What is skilled nursing care?

This healthcare service refers to a higher level of medical care that includes registered nurses and other certified medical professionals. Assisted living residents in need of skilled nursing care are individuals who have suffered from a stroke, are recovering from some type of injury, or have a specific condition like diabetes that requires ongoing medical care.

Assisted living communities that offer rehabilitation, therapy, or medical services are examples of skilled nursing care. The licensing of each state will determine what level of care can be provided at each community.

Senior care facilities usually have registered nurses, licensed practical nurses and certified nursing assistants on staff to provide 24-hour care as needed while also helping with everyday tasks for the residents.

Does every person who requires skilled nursing care have to be admitted to a nursing home or assisted living facility?

Absolutely not. Many communities offer short-term rehabilitation care as well as long-term care, allowing individuals to stay while they are receiving physical therapy or other services necessary for them to recover. Once their course of treatment is completed and their health is restored, they may return to their home.

Individuals recovering from a stroke or severe injury receive skilled care from licensed nurses or other medical professionals. This type of care is offered by select senior living communities, but there are also skilled nursing providers who offer in-home health care services. You can then choose what works best for you and your family members.

What to consider when looking for a nursing home or assisted living facility

When it comes to finding care for a beloved family member, there are a lot of variables to consider. There are important and necessary questions to ask before committing to one place or another

  • Does this nursing home fit your budget?
  • Does this nursing home have the skilled services needed?
  • Does this nursing home provide varying levels of independence and care?
  • Does this nursing home accept Medicaid services?
  • Does this nursing home provide recreation programs?
  • Is this nursing home close to family?

Answering the big questions first, including the level of care required plus the cost of care, should be a priority. Once these are answered, you can feel confident in narrowing down your list of assisted living facilities or nursing homes options. This will allow you to focus on amenities that may mean more to you on a personal level. Aside from personal choice, there are some amenities skilled nursing services should require for their residents.

Top amenities every skilled nursing home should have

There are no shortages of skilled nursing homes and assisted living facilities across the region, but do they provide the quality care and living conditions you desire for your loved one?

There are some amenities that are non-negotiable. When it comes to nursing homes and assisted living facilities, here are some of the top amenities that each should provide.

High quality medical care

In order to offer quality care, nursing homes need to employ quality people. Providing personal care and skilled nursing care requires people who are knowledgeable and compassionate, not only from a certification standpoint but also in how they interact with residents. To learn more, consider reading some reviews to get a first-hand, personal perspective.

Medication management

When it comes to nursing home services, the importance of having people help manage medication for your loved one can’t be overstated. StoneBridge offers medication management as well as pain and wound management for residents who require this type of assistance.

24-hour professional medical staff

This is a must for a skilled nursing facility. Having the peace of mind of 24-hour skilled nursing care for your loved one is imperative. Nursing homes typically provide around-the-clock care, but having trained medical professionals routinely on-site is key.

Rehabilitation services

Individuals looking to recover from specific injuries or illnesses often require different types of therapy. A good skilled nursing facility should provide skilled rehabilitation services including speech therapy, occupational therapy and physical therapy. These therapies provide the foundation to help residents get back to being their best.

StoneBridge has skilled nursing facilities across the region to meet your needs

The compassionate and knowledgeable staff at StoneBridge is ready to care for your family. Whether you are looking for a short-term skilled nursing facility or a long-term independent living community, StoneBridge provides a full list of senior services that can meet your needs.

StoneBridge has a reputation for being one of the top senior community leaders in the region with over 50 years of industry experience. Take a virtual tour and call 636.477.3280 for more details on available care options.