Assisted living facilities provide housing for disabled or elderly people that need extra assistance with daily tasks but still allow the residents to have independence. These facilities can provide a wide range of services, including:
- Individual service plans that contain the resident’s goals.
- Three meals per day.
- Medication management.
- On-site pharmacy.
- 24/7 on-call nurse for emergencies.
- Housekeeping and laundry services.
If you are looking for an assisted living facility for yourself or a loved one, the services that a facility offers are important factors in your choice. However, they are not the only thing that you should consider. The principles of the facility should also be significant in your decision. Because these facilities provide vital assistance to a vulnerable population, there are three principles that these facilities should strictly adhere to. Finding a facility that exclusively follows these principles will ensure that the residents are treated with compassion and respect.
Beginning your assisted living facility search should start with examining these principles in detail so that you and your loved one will know what to expect for those living in the community.
The first principle to ensuring quality care for each resident is to guarantee that their plan is tailored to their individual needs. This means the care that each patient receives will be a bit different from everyone else’s—a single care plan will not result in the best possible experience for the residents. Failing to craft a treatment plan specific to the individual can cause significant harm.
Examples of this customization include exercise or diet plans. One resident may require a daily exercise regimen, whereas another could have dangerous side effects from frequent exercise. For food plans, one person may need a heart-healthy diet with plenty of plant-based foods, and another may refuse to eat foods with certain textures. Understanding the residents and not deviating from this principle is important for the resident experience.
Always Practice Ethics
Trust and integrity are cornerstones of positive assisted living facilities. Residents should be treated as individuals that require full transparency about all matters that can affect them and their care. The moral and ethical treatment of every resident ensures that each one is cared for fairly and respectfully. This translates to every resident receiving high-quality care from each staff member, meaning that no resident is treated differently from another. When you or your loved one moves to an assisted living facility, having confidence that every resident is given the utmost respect offers great peace of mind.
An easy window into an assisted living facility’s true values and standards lies within its mission statement. These facilities provide an essential service that makes them a large part of their residents’ lives. Transparency with their belief system gives outsiders a view into how the facility is run so they can make educated decisions about its quality. The mission statement should be easy to find and clearly understandable. There should be an emphasis on improving care and operations, as well as patient health and quality of life. Employees should also be familiar with their employer’s mission statement and goals; this shows deep pride in their workplace and the job that they do.
Q: Where Do I Find an Assisted Living Community?
A: There are roughly 1 million licensed assisted living beds across 28,900 communities in the United States, according to the American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living. More of these facilities are located in the West and South than in other areas because they are more popular for retirees to move to. 40.8% of all facilities are located in the West and 28% are in the South, compared to 22.6% in the Midwest and 8.6% in the Northeast.
Q: Why Are Activities Important in Assisted Living?
A: The activities found in these communities will dramatically increase the quality of life of their residents. Studies show that inactivity can increase the chances of developing a potentially serious disease like depression, cancer, hypertension, and even premature death. A quality facility will have experience creating activities suited for multiple mobility levels. Opportunities to engage in community activities like low-impact sports or arts and crafts improve mental health and well-being while providing opportunities to make quality interpersonal connections.
Q: How Much Does Assisted Living Cost?
A: A major obstacle to elderly and disabled people getting the care they need by living in an assisted living facility is the associated cost. Costs differ significantly from region to region and will depend on the services that the potential resident needs. A 2020 survey from Genworth found that assisted living communities have a median annual cost of $51,600. Since the length of time an assisted living facility will be needed is unknown, budgeting is important for success.
Q: Does Insurance Cover the Cost of Assisted Living?
A: Neither private insurance nor Medicare will typically cover the cost of an assisted living facility, although it may be possible to find a long-term care insurance plan that can alleviate some of the costs. In some instances, Medicare will cover the cost of healthcare expenses for a resident of an assisted living facility, like care provided by a doctor or nurse, but it will not cover the facility itself. There are, however, some options for Medicaid to cover assisted living facilities.
Q: What Is the Difference Between Assisted Living and a Skilled Nursing Facility?
A: A skilled nursing facility provides care to those that need medical care and supervision 24 hours a day. They often have a more clinical-like feel and have a high standard of medical care. An assisted living facility has less focus on medical care and more focus on aiding with daily tasks. They frequently have a more home-like feel, as residents rent a suite or apartment.
Quality Assisted Living Facilities
One of the most important standards to compare assisted living facilities against is their compliance with these three principles. A well-run facility will have no problem showing its dedication to people-centered care and ethical treatment of residents. The mission statement should be easily accessible and obviously show their focus on the other two principles. There is no rating system for assisted living facilities like there is for nursing homes, so finding a quality assisted living facility requires thorough research and exploration.
At Rocky Mountain Assisted Living, we embody the three principles of a quality assisted living facility and live by them every day. To learn more, please contact us today.