Karen McPhail, RN, MSN
Residential or Personal Care Homes- Quality and Cost Effective Options for Care
The cost of senior care is spiraling out of control!!! Many people hope that the bubble will burst, and worry about how they will afford to be cared for as they grow older. I have more and more clients coming to me with limited resources seeking out affordable care options. One option that I am finding to be workable for many clients are residential or personal care homes. Residential or personal care homes offer resident focused, personalized services for small groups of adults, generally around 8 per home maximum. These homes provide housing, meal services, private rooms, and assistance with aspects of daily living. Some care homes will also provide private room furnishings, transportation, customized activities, outings, and more!
Personal care homes provide several advantages. Personalized, resident focused services and higher staff to resident ratios are often the biggest advantage. Many care homes can also customize and cater to cultural and religious preferences better than traditional facilities. More frequent outings and recreation are offered to better fit resident needs and preferences as they are catering to a smaller group of individuals. And of course who does not want to be at home? Many people prefer a less clinical and care based environment and crave the normalcy of life that only a care home can provide!
In addition, the cost is a big positive! Care homes are usually a fixed cost, so families can plan and budget with some predictability. In addition, the cost of a personal care home is often lower than a traditional assisted living facility. The community fees are much lower if required and personal care homes do not usually have levels of care which can be extensive in traditional care facilities For example, one newer facility in the Northern Virginia area is charging in addition to the basic apartment rate which starts at around $7000.00 per month (small studio apartment) an additional personal care charge of up to $4795.00 per month. An additional premium charge of around $600.00 is also added to this if on multiple medications or if you require simple eye drops. The community fee required is also one month of the base rent upon move in. For residents requiring the highest level of care this will cost in the first month $19,395.00 and over $12,000 a month just for facility care not counting insurance, incontinence products, etc. Incontinence products were an additional charge at the facility of over $500.00 a month. Most individuals just cannot afford this type of living situation long term and at these types of facilities they often do not participate in the Auxillary grant program so once funds are exhausted residents are forced to move to a skilled nursing facility and placed in a shared room, medicaid bed...which does not provide quality of life for most people sadly...
So when you are looking at care options for yourself or a loved one think out of the box...take a look at all your options before choosing! Get guidance from a professional before signing any contracts! Think about what you really want for your new home or what your family member has expressed!
And as most people want to remain at home, but are unable to due to care needs; why not explore a new home that looks like home, feels like home, is cost effective, and can still meet care needs long term?
Feel free to reach out via my contact tab if you are interested in receiving a list of trusted and high quality personal care homes in your area!!! I am always happy to share resources and provide guidance!