Nursing Homes

The fastly growing population of the elderly has similarly augmented the rise of institutions that better meet their physical, mental, emotional and social needs. Nursing homes are among the most trusted institutions for the elderly who need constant and unwavering supervision. Most of these institutions have clients averaging at least 65 years old. Though it has been mostly catered for the elderly, a nursing home can also be a place for other people with special needs who require 24-hour management. They now provide care to clients across all age groups who require either custodial care or rehabilitation. Earlier discharge from acute care facilities necessitates long-term institutions simply for supplemental health regimens. Nursing homes are a cost-effective way to enable clients with acute illnesses, injuries and post-operative precautions to recover beyond their discharge.

The Purpose of Nursing Homes

Typically, a nursing home bridges the gap between those who can’t be thoroughly cared for at home, but do not have conditions that call for hospital services. These are for older adults who all require care round the clock at a much higher level than those who reside in assisted living facilities. Nursing homes are manned by a team of competent nurses and nursing aides who work on rotation throughout the day, ensuring that each of the resident’s hourly health care needs are met. Virtually all residents need some degree of assistance for their activities of daily living. At present, the terms “extended care facilities” and “convalescent homes” have also been used to depict nursing homes. These institutions are often multilevel campuses that may or may not include independent living quarters and skilled nursing facilities that provide levels of personal care for those who are unable to care for themselves without assistance and are chronically ill.

Nursing Home Environment

Though nursing homes are an entirely different type of system, some homes have been set up to mimic the hospital environment and system. The staff not only provides medical care, but also offers rehabilitation through occupational, physical and speech therapy. Some bigger institutions even have a nurses’ station on each floor. In this type of setup, residents are placed in utilitarian rooms that resemble hospital wards, and are referred to as patients. Alternatives offer a more homey approach when it comes to the environment. Some nursing homes strive to recreate a neighborhood feel by giving residents more freedom in their daily schedules and access to other facilities, such as the kitchen and game rooms. The staff members in this type of nursing home are encouraged to develop friendly relationships with the senior residents.

Additional Services

It is important to consider the extra services offered. All nursing homes provide 24-hour care and attention to their clients, but some go beyond the standards to address the senior residents’ most pressing needs. For example, there are establishments that have built special care units for seniors with progressive memory problems, such as advanced stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Other establishments allow couples to live together. Because the elderly population is often afflicted with long-term illnesses, nursing homes have programs oriented primarily to meet the exact needs of the age group. Unlike assisted living facilities, nursing homes go beyond a modicum of personal services such as hygiene, bathing and assistance with activities of daily living. These institutions provide regular nursing care and often medical attention.

Nursing Homes Offer Varying Services

The type of care provided in nursing homes may also vary considerably. For example, some nursing homes only admit residents when they are still ambulatory and are very much able to dress themselves. Other nursing homes are suited to provide bedside care to clients who are incapacitated or are disabled. Moreover, specific guidelines preside over the admission of clients to a nursing home. Included in the prior assessments are nursing care requirements, treatment needs, and insurance criteria. Going into a nursing home indeed entail huge decisions. Clients may take advantage of several services and programs as mentioned, including those that extend to senior activities and legal or financial assistance. Nursing homes provide a basic range of trusted services; it is important to choose an establishment that meets several factors that may affect the decision, such as homes that are near families, friends and communities. For seniors who do not wish to stay at hospitals but cannot remain at home, nursing homes is the best choice as it could very well provide the best of both worlds.

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