While you may have certain expectations for your later years, you are also realistic enough to know it is impossible to predict how things will turn out. You may hope to remain in your home the rest of your life, but your health issues may not allow it. You may anticipate one or more of your children taking care of you, but their lives may take unexpected turns that make this impossible.
Fortunately, as methods for caring for the needs of older adults improve, more options become available. You no longer have only the choice of staying home or going to a nursing home. While you may not know what you need until the time arrives, it is wise to be prepared by learning as much as possible about your options.
What are my options?
A major factor in planning for your later years is money. Setting back enough money to cover long-term nursing care is a challenge in most cases, so planning for Medicare or Medicaid benefits is important. These government benefits place strict stipulations on your assets, so you will need to look ahead and prepare. Medicaid and Medicare do not cover all options for long-term care, and this is something to keep in mind as you look at your alternatives, including the following choices:
- Skilled nursing facilities provide the most comprehensive care in case your physical condition requires round-the-clock attention.
- Memory care units are typically wings or separate facilities within nursing homes that have specially trained staff for dealing with residents with forms of dementia.
- Nursing homes have medical staff on hand 24 hours a day because their residents often have chronic illnesses or need assistance with daily tasks like bathing and eating.
- Continuing care retirement communities often offer impressive campuses that allow you to transition from independent living to onsite facilities with more assistance based on your changing medical needs.
- In an assisted living facility, you would receive medical and personal care with opportunities to participate in fun and interesting activities with other residents.
- Retirement communities provide independent living in a community with other seniors and options for various levels of personal assistance, such as cooking and cleaning.
Other options, such as medical foster care and some private nursing homes, may not fall under the coverage of government programs, so it is essential that you learn about what is available in your Connecticut community. You may find assistance with this task when you reach out to an attorney who can help you begin the planning and preparation for any long-term care you may need.