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Independent Living Vs. Assisted Living: Which is Right for You?

Independent Living Vs. Assisted Living: Which is Right for You?

Deciding where you, your parents or other family members will live out their lives when they are in need of healthcare services, is a momentous decision, often made in haste during a health crisis.

During these times, it is important to be armed with the information you need to make the best decision possible.

Below are seven key criteria for determining which assisted living or skilled nursing facility is right for you or a loved one.

1.  Check the Star Rating

The federal government’s Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services created a Five-Star Quality Rating System to help families compare health care providers. Facilities are rated based on health inspections, staffing and quality measures. Look for a facility that has a four-star or five-star rating. NursingHomeRating.org also employs a five-star rating system, as you can see here.

2. Seek Recommendations 

An objective review is important, but you also need to think about whether a healthcare provider is right for your particular circumstances. In that case, it can be helpful to seek opinions from both experts and everyday consumers like you. Talk to your friends who may have experienced similar circumstances. Then examine the online reviews of facilities from individual consumers and organizations that specialize in senior living communities. For example,  here is the review from Senior Advice  of Gateway Vista, a continuum of care community in  Lincoln, Nebraska.

3. Research the Company Online

Online recommendations and reviews can be eye-opening, and while they only tell part of the story, they can help you understand the real-life experiences of other families, patients and residents. Research the organization on Google, their website and other online review sites, such as SeniorAdvice.com. Consider both the good and bad information – they will provide ideas of things to look for and questions to ask if and when you visit.

4. Review the Organizational Values and History 

Is the organization you’re looking into family-owned or does it report to a corporate board elsewhere? Is its mission to maximize the health and well-being of its residents or to generate profits for shareholders? Is it a place where employees love to work and remain for years or is there constant turnover of staff? Are the people in charge innovators in the field going back decades or are they fairly new to it? Answers to questions like these will go a long way towards determining whether this is the healthcare provider for you.

5.  Check Their Credentials

It’s easy to determine whether a provider is recognized for excellence by the American Health Care Association and the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services.

6.  Get a Sense of How It Feels There

You want to walk onto the campus and feel like you’re home. You want to see staff and residents smiling and celebrating life. You may feel down when you need assistance with daily activities or rehab for an injury, but you want the people around you to pick you up with their spirit.

7.  Make Sure There is Easy Access to Healthcare Partners

Most continuum of care communities have a wide range of healthcare providers on site, but how about the physicians, therapists and specialists you may need while living there? Determine in advance whether those providers are right down the road or two towns over where they might be difficult to access. That can make a world of difference for you or your loved one.

Nye Health Services  offers seven communities in Eastern Nebraska and one in Wyoming, structured to meet the needs of their residents from independent living to skilled nursing care. A family-owned company with a rich history of connecting with the people they serve, Nye Health Services is open for visits anytime. Call  402.753.1400to schedule an appointment at locations in Fremont, Lincoln, South Sioux City, Norfolk, or Jackson Hole, or visit  NyeHealthServices.com  for more information.

8 Pain Management Techniques That Help You Stay Active

8 Pain Management Techniques That Help You Stay Active

Although pain is the body’s early warning system, increasingly, health care professionals are recognizing that pain also limits a person’s ability to function. It can interfere with mood and sleep, and the ability to move, concentrate and heal. Longer hospital stays and recovery times have been linked to unmanaged pain.

In short, chronic pain is neither a normal part of life that anyone should have to tolerate, nor a normal part of aging that should just be accepted.

Health professionals are also learning that how we experience pain affects our ability to tolerate it. Individuals who are fearful, anxious or depressed have a lower tolerance for pain and are more debilitated by it. Consequently, pain management techniques must also address the emotional component.

Below are the eight most common methods for treating chronic pain.

1. Physical Therapy

Research shows that moderate exercise can reduce pain and vice versa – less pain allows for more exercise. Physical therapists teach patients how to engage in this virtuous cycle by moving safely and functionally, and building strength through therapeutic exercise.

2. Heat and Cold

Cold therapy reduces painful swelling and numbs the affected area of the body. It is usually used early after the onset of pain. Heat is generally applied after that because it helps muscles relax, promotes blood circulation and eliminate lactic acid buildup. Blood flow and lactic acid removal speed healing and reduce pain.

3. Relaxation Techniques

Meditation, deep breathing, relaxation imagery, bio-feedback, self-hypnosis and other related techniques calm the mind and reduce stress, both of which have been found to alleviate the experience of pain. Additionally, relaxation slows body functions, including the transmission of pain.

4. Massage

Clinical studies like this one have found massage therapy provides significant relief from pain. Massage relaxes painful muscles and related structures and diverts the body’s attention away from pain in a process called “gate control.”

5. Ultrasound and TENS

Ultrasound uses high frequency sound waves to stimulate blood flow to muscles while relaxing them. TENS – transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation – innervates offending nerves until they are exhausted, reducing their ability to transmit pain.

6. Acupuncture

The ancient Eastern art of acupuncture has long been recognized as beneficial to those suffering from chronic pain. It’s still a mystery why acupuncture is an effective pain reliever but it is thought to stimulate the body’s own pain fighting mechanisms. It is also generally performed in a quiet, relaxing atmosphere that has some of the same effects as other relaxation techniques.

7. Mental Health Support

Psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers and other mental health practitioners can provide counseling to individuals feeling stressed and depressed in connection with their pain. Among the techniques they may use are keeping a pain diary, envisioning a pain-free existence, and addressing other issues that weigh on patients’ mental health.

8. Drugs

Useful for short-term relief but a last resort for chronic pain, analgesics like ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil), acetaminophen (Tylenol), naproxen (Naprosyn, Aleve) and aspirin can help calm pain. Steroids may be prescribed by a doctor to alleviate inflammation that causes pain and antidepressants can improve mood and aid sleep.

These eight strategies generally work best in combination, because pain has many causes and pathways. Freeing a body from debilitating pain promotes physical, mental and emotional well-being.

Nye Health Services offers six campus locations in Eastern Nebraska and one in Wyoming, structured to meet the needs of their residents from independent living to skilled nursing and memory care. A family-owned company with a rich history of connecting with the people they serve, Nye Health Services is open for visits anytime. Call 402.753.1400 to schedule an appointment at locations in Fremont, Lincoln, South Sioux City, Norfolk, or Jackson Hole, or visit NyeHealthServices.com for more information. 

When You Should Bring Parents on an Assisted Living Visit

When You Should Bring Parents on an Assisted Living Visit

WHEN YOU SHOULD BRING PARENTS ON AN ASSISTED LIVING VISIT

For more than one reason, moving one or both of your parents into an assisted living facility is never easy. On the one hand, you might very well have to convince Mom or Dad that they no longer can live in their home – that they are unable to handle day-to-day tasks such as fixing meals, bathing, cleaning the house, shoveling snow, mowing the lawn and doing home repairs.  

Leaving home is an emotional journey for your parent and to overcome some of the fears or apprehensions they have, it is critical to find the right place for your parent to call home. You’ll have to consider a wide array of issues, from the quality of medical care that’s offered to meals, safety, and recreational activities. And, of course, the cost will also be a major factor. 

You can find out a lot about most of these issues by visiting a variety of assisted living facilities. Should you do so by yourself or with your spouse, or should Mom and Dad go with you? The answer to that question will depend in large part on whether your parents are willing and eager to move to a place where those day-to-day tasks are taken care of for them – or if they are adamant about staying in the house that has been their home for years or even decades. 

Here are the two key considerations. 

1. You Don’t Need Them for Fact-Finding 
An initial visit to an assisted living facility to find out about subjects such as medical care, meals and safety can be done without your parents coming along. But remember – assisted living is a patient-driven experience, and the ultimate decision often lies with Mom and Dad. Their needs must be taken into consideration, even after they move in. For example, if your parents don’t feel safe in their new home, you might have to call staff members and remind them to make sure the door to Mom or Dad’s room is locked every night. Or, if Mom or Dad isn’t eating right, you might have to ask about adjusting the menu in the dining hall. 

2. You Do Need Them When Preferences are Involved 
However, especially if your parents are reluctant to move to an assisted living facility, you should take them with you when you visit a senior living community so they can see what types of fun and interesting recreational activities are available. Many facilities plan activities year-round, and family members are always encouraged to attend. If your parents aren’t sure about whether they are ready to leave their home and move to an assisted living facility, a visit to a senior living community is a great way to ease their fears and clear up any misconceptions they might have about moving. 

If you are looking to learn more about how assisted living can benefit your loved one, or if you would like to know more about how to choose an assisted-living community that’s right for you, visit www.nyehealthservices.com to learn more and find an assisted-living community near you. Nye Health Services offers independent living and assisted living options in five locations in Nebraska and Wyoming.

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4 Life-Changing Health Benefits of Independent Living

4 Life-Changing Health Benefits of Independent Living

4 LIFE-CHANGING HEALTH BENEFITS OF INDEPENDENT LIVING

As people age, it’s important for them to stay connected socially. Being isolated from friends, family members and neighbors can lead to depression and other mental health issues. Studies have shown that loneliness can contribute to physical problems as well. Living alone can present many barriers to social connectedness that seniors who live in an independent living community don’t experience. Isolation can have negative impacts on your health, fitness, and memory, and the older we get, the more important it becomes that we are surrounded by people we know.
Senior citizens who remain in their home face a variety of issues that have the potential to lead to isolation and physical and mental ailments. How can you avoid them? Here are four life-changing benefits of independent living.

1. Support When Friends and Relatives Move Away
For many seniors, friends and relatives may live too far away, or may even be thinking of moving to a more distant location to be closer to their own families. That reduces the natural daily interactions that occur, as well as the free assistance and watchful eyes provided by loved ones. Independent living communities generally offer a wide range of activities such as singing and playing musical instruments; biking, dancing and other physical activities; and cards, chess, checkers and board games. Residents can enjoy each other’s company and engage in brain-boosting conversation daily.

2. Health Issues Won’t Keep You Down
Staying social is vital to overall health and well-being. When seniors have
medical issues that keep them from visiting friends and neighbors, going on shopping excursions or even walking around the neighborhood, it limits their interactions with others as well their time out in the world. One study even found that those seniors who had the most social interaction also maintained the highest level of mobility as they aged. The key to maintaining a healthy body, regardless of age, is to maintain a healthy and active brain. While residents are meeting, interacting and having fun with new friends and neighbors, they can also enjoy an array of services that will help them remain healthy, happy and well-adjusted. Independent living communities offer options such as housekeeping and laundry, three meals a day, a safe and secure building, cable TV, Wi-Fi, utilities, social and recreational activities, personal medical alert systems, scheduled outings and transportation to doctors’ appointments.

3. Can’t Drive? No Problem
Even if they are physically able to leave their home, they might be limited in their ability to drive, and they might not have access to public transportation. This can leave seniors stranded without access to the things they need and want in their lives. Independent living communities offer regularly-scheduled outings to shopping areas, movie theaters, baseball stadiums and possibly even golf courses. They often organize seniors to volunteer at schools, hospitals or nursing homes, or local organizations such as youth sports teams.

4. An Unyielding Support System
Seniors often are confronted with the emotional impact of friends and family members in their age group has passed away. Those that live alone are often forced to deal with these losses, especially that of a spouse, without an everpresent network of support. Not having a community of support makes the grieving process more difficult. While it’s not an easy choice to leave the home, for many seniors, many of the challenges they face can be eliminated by moving into an independent living community, where a community is readily available to prop you up when life gets hard.

Would you like to learn more about the advantages of living in an independent living community? Contact Nye Health Services, which provides a wide range of services to maximize the health and wellness of older adults. For more information, please contact Nye Health Services at (402) 753-1400.

Nye Health Services Award Winning Campuses & Services

Nye Health Services  ·  2230 North Somers Avenue  ·  Fremont, Nebraska 68025  ·  402.753.1400  ·  Privacy Policy | XML Sitemap

7 CONSIDERATIONS FOR SELECTING HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS FOR SENIORS

Deciding where you, your parents or other family members will live out their lives when they are in need of healthcare services, is a momentous decision, often made in haste during a health crisis.

During these times, it is important to be armed with the information you need to make the best decision possible.

Below are seven key criteria for determining which assisted living or skilled nursing facility is right for you or a loved one.

1.  Check the Star Rating

The federal government’s Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services created a Five-Star Quality Rating System to help families compare health care providers. Facilities are rated based on health inspections, staffing and quality measures. Look for a facility that has a four-star or five-star rating. NursingHomeRating.org also employs a five-star rating system, as you can see here.

2. Seek Recommendations 

An objective review is important, but you also need to think about whether a healthcare provider is right for your particular circumstances. In that case, it can be helpful to seek opinions from both experts and everyday consumers like you. Talk to your friends who may have experienced similar circumstances. Then examine the online reviews of facilities from individual consumers and organizations that specialize in senior living communities. For example,  here is the review from Senior Advice  of Gateway Vista, a continuum of care community in  Lincoln, Nebraska.

3. Research the Company Online

Online recommendations and reviews can be eye-opening, and while they only tell part of the story, they can help you understand the real-life experiences of other families, patients and residents. Research the organization on Google, their website and other online review sites, such as SeniorAdvice.com. Consider both the good and bad information – they will provide ideas of things to look for and questions to ask if and when you visit.

4. Review the Organizational Values and History 

Is the organization you’re looking into family-owned or does it report to a corporate board elsewhere? Is its mission to maximize the health and well-being of its residents or to generate profits for shareholders? Is it a place where employees love to work and remain for years or is there constant turnover of staff? Are the people in charge innovators in the field going back decades or are they fairly new to it? Answers to questions like these will go a long way towards determining whether this is the healthcare provider for you.

5.  Check Their Credentials

It’s easy to determine whether a provider is recognized for excellence by the American Health Care Association and the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services.

6.  Get a Sense of How It Feels There

You want to walk onto the campus and feel like you’re home. You want to see staff and residents smiling and celebrating life. You may feel down when you need assistance with daily activities or rehab for an injury, but you want the people around you to pick you up with their spirit.

7.  Make Sure There is Easy Access to Healthcare Partners

Most continuum of care communities have a wide range of healthcare providers on site, but how about the physicians, therapists and specialists you may need while living there? Determine in advance whether those providers are right down the road or two towns over where they might be difficult to access. That can make a world of difference for you or your loved one.

Nye Health Services  offers seven communities in Eastern Nebraska and one in Wyoming, structured to meet the needs of their residents from independent living to skilled nursing care. A family-owned company with a rich history of connecting with the people they serve, Nye Health Services is open for visits anytime. Call  402.753.1400to schedule an appointment at locations in Fremont, Lincoln, South Sioux City, Norfolk, or Jackson Hole, or visit  NyeHealthServices.com  for more information.

Nye Health Services Award Winning Campuses & Services

Nye Health Services  ·  2230 North Somers Avenue  ·  Fremont, Nebraska 68025  ·  402.753.1400  ·  Privacy Policy | XML Sitemap

6 WAYS TO STAY CONNECTED THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

You’ve transitioned to an independent living community or an assisted living arrangement somewhere new. You still have your old friends and family, but maybe they’re no longer in your neighborhood. 

Now here come the holidays and you’re worried about getting lost in the hubbub as your old friends and family enjoy their traditions without you. It’s a common concern.  

Fortunately, you live in the best time ever to keep friends and family close even when they’re far away. Here are 6 ideas you might not have considered. 

1. Enjoy New Traditions with New Friends 

All those opportunities for socializing with neighbors in your new community will pay off come holiday time. If you have been socializing, you probably know people who are facing the same predicament. Why not start a new tradition with them? 

2. Invite Folks to Your Place for a Pot Luck 

You can have your friends over without playing host. In fact, you don’t even have to do it in your home. You can rent a community room on Thanksgiving or Christmas Day, invite everyone to bring a dish appropriate to the holiday, and enjoy communion with old friends and new. Or, you can cook together as a group. Either way, you’re not doing all the work yourself. 

3. Organize a Volunteer Opportunity Together 

Serving meals together with friends at the local soup kitchen, visiting patients in a hospital or in hospice care, or doing a project that helps others can be spiritually uplifting, and can help you forget any loneliness you might feel. If your family joins you, focusing on others who have less than you is a great way to strengthen the bonds among you. 

4. Get with the Times and Follow Family on Social Media 

Keep up with the grandkids by following them on Instagram or Snapchat, or find your children on Facebook. It’s amazing how much of their lives people share on social media today—things you might not even hear about in a phone conversation or personal visit. A lot of older people are intimidated by social media, but it was all designed to be used by regular people. The only reason you don’t know how to use it is that you haven’t yet learned.  

5. Video Chat! 

For friends and family who are far away, there is now the alternative that allows you to talk to them and see them, almost as if you’re in the room together. Video chatting is easy to set up; in fact, most computers and laptops are already equipped with cameras and microphones. If yours isn’t, webcams cost 50 bucks at the local electronics store or on the web. 

6. Play Games with Them Online 

The Internet is awash with games that people can play online, like Words With Friends, the online Scrabble knockoff; or Splatoon, the cartoon-based ink-shooting game; or… well, literally thousands of others. You can even do it while video chatting, so you can trash talk your family or friends and watch their reactions while you play. 

It’s just easier than ever to keep up with those you love or start relationships with new friends, thanks to technology and communities for people like you.  

Nye Health Services offers seven communities in Eastern Nebraska and one in Wyoming structured to meet the needs of their residents from independent living to skilled nursing care. A family-owned company with a rich history of connecting with the people they serve, Nye Health Services is open for visits anytime. Call 402.753.1400 to make an appointment at a location in Fremont, Lincoln, South Sioux City, Norfolk, or Jackson Hole, or visit NyeHealthServices.com for more information.

Nye Health Services Award Winning Campuses & Services

Nye Health Services  ·  2230 North Somers Avenue  ·  Fremont, Nebraska 68025  ·  402.753.1400  ·  Privacy Policy | XML Sitemap

7 CONSIDERATIONS FOR SELECTING HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS FOR SENIORS

Deciding where you, your parents or other family members will live out their lives when they are in need of healthcare services, is a momentous decision, often made in haste during a health crisis.

During these times, it is important to be armed with the information you need to make the best decision possible.

Below are seven key criteria for determining which assisted living or skilled nursing facility is right for you or a loved one.

1.  Check the Star Rating

The federal government’s Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services created a Five-Star Quality Rating System to help families compare health care providers. Facilities are rated based on health inspections, staffing and quality measures. Look for a facility that has a four-star or five-star rating. NursingHomeRating.org also employs a five-star rating system, as you can see here.

2. Seek Recommendations 

An objective review is important, but you also need to think about whether a healthcare provider is right for your particular circumstances. In that case, it can be helpful to seek opinions from both experts and everyday consumers like you. Talk to your friends who may have experienced similar circumstances. Then examine the online reviews of facilities from individual consumers and organizations that specialize in senior living communities. For example,  here is the review from Senior Advice  of Gateway Vista, a continuum of care community in  Lincoln, Nebraska.

3. Research the Company Online

Online recommendations and reviews can be eye-opening, and while they only tell part of the story, they can help you understand the real-life experiences of other families, patients and residents. Research the organization on Google, their website and other online review sites, such as SeniorAdvice.com. Consider both the good and bad information – they will provide ideas of things to look for and questions to ask if and when you visit.

4. Review the Organizational Values and History 

Is the organization you’re looking into family-owned or does it report to a corporate board elsewhere? Is its mission to maximize the health and well-being of its residents or to generate profits for shareholders? Is it a place where employees love to work and remain for years or is there constant turnover of staff? Are the people in charge innovators in the field going back decades or are they fairly new to it? Answers to questions like these will go a long way towards determining whether this is the healthcare provider for you.

5.  Check Their Credentials

It’s easy to determine whether a provider is recognized for excellence by the American Health Care Association and the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services.

6.  Get a Sense of How It Feels There

You want to walk onto the campus and feel like you’re home. You want to see staff and residents smiling and celebrating life. You may feel down when you need assistance with daily activities or rehab for an injury, but you want the people around you to pick you up with their spirit.

7.  Make Sure There is Easy Access to Healthcare Partners

Most continuum of care communities have a wide range of healthcare providers on site, but how about the physicians, therapists and specialists you may need while living there? Determine in advance whether those providers are right down the road or two towns over where they might be difficult to access. That can make a world of difference for you or your loved one.

Nye Health Services  offers seven communities in Eastern Nebraska and one in Wyoming, structured to meet the needs of their residents from independent living to skilled nursing care. A family-owned company with a rich history of connecting with the people they serve, Nye Health Services is open for visits anytime. Call  402.753.1400to schedule an appointment at locations in Fremont, Lincoln, South Sioux City, Norfolk, or Jackson Hole, or visit  NyeHealthServices.com  for more information.

Nye Health Services Award Winning Campuses & Services

Nye Health Services  ·  2230 North Somers Avenue  ·  Fremont, Nebraska 68025  ·  402.753.1400  ·  Privacy Policy | XML Sitemap

7 CONSIDERATIONS FOR SELECTING HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS FOR SENIORS

Deciding where you, your parents or other family members will live out their lives when they are in need of healthcare services, is a momentous decision, often made in haste during a health crisis.

During these times, it is important to be armed with the information you need to make the best decision possible.

Below are seven key criteria for determining which assisted living or skilled nursing facility is right for you or a loved one.

1.  Check the Star Rating

The federal government’s Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services created a Five-Star Quality Rating System to help families compare health care providers. Facilities are rated based on health inspections, staffing and quality measures. Look for a facility that has a four-star or five-star rating. NursingHomeRating.org also employs a five-star rating system, as you can see here.

2. Seek Recommendations 

An objective review is important, but you also need to think about whether a healthcare provider is right for your particular circumstances. In that case, it can be helpful to seek opinions from both experts and everyday consumers like you. Talk to your friends who may have experienced similar circumstances. Then examine the online reviews of facilities from individual consumers and organizations that specialize in senior living communities. For example,  here is the review from Senior Advice  of Gateway Vista, a continuum of care community in  Lincoln, Nebraska.

3. Research the Company Online

Online recommendations and reviews can be eye-opening, and while they only tell part of the story, they can help you understand the real-life experiences of other families, patients and residents. Research the organization on Google, their website and other online review sites, such as SeniorAdvice.com. Consider both the good and bad information – they will provide ideas of things to look for and questions to ask if and when you visit.

4. Review the Organizational Values and History 

Is the organization you’re looking into family-owned or does it report to a corporate board elsewhere? Is its mission to maximize the health and well-being of its residents or to generate profits for shareholders? Is it a place where employees love to work and remain for years or is there constant turnover of staff? Are the people in charge innovators in the field going back decades or are they fairly new to it? Answers to questions like these will go a long way towards determining whether this is the healthcare provider for you.

5.  Check Their Credentials

It’s easy to determine whether a provider is recognized for excellence by the American Health Care Association and the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services.

6.  Get a Sense of How It Feels There

You want to walk onto the campus and feel like you’re home. You want to see staff and residents smiling and celebrating life. You may feel down when you need assistance with daily activities or rehab for an injury, but you want the people around you to pick you up with their spirit.

7.  Make Sure There is Easy Access to Healthcare Partners

Most continuum of care communities have a wide range of healthcare providers on site, but how about the physicians, therapists and specialists you may need while living there? Determine in advance whether those providers are right down the road or two towns over where they might be difficult to access. That can make a world of difference for you or your loved one.

Nye Health Services  offers seven communities in Eastern Nebraska and one in Wyoming, structured to meet the needs of their residents from independent living to skilled nursing care. A family-owned company with a rich history of connecting with the people they serve, Nye Health Services is open for visits anytime. Call  402.753.1400to schedule an appointment at locations in Fremont, Lincoln, South Sioux City, Norfolk, or Jackson Hole, or visit  NyeHealthServices.com  for more information.

Nye Health Services Award Winning Campuses & Services

Nye Health Services  ·  2230 North Somers Avenue  ·  Fremont, Nebraska 68025  ·  402.753.1400  ·  Privacy Policy | XML Sitemap

The Most Important Questions to Ask When Touring an Assisted Living Facility

The Most Important Questions to Ask When Touring an Assisted Living Facility

THE MOST IMPORTANT QUESTIONS TO ASK WHEN TOURING AN ASSISTED-LIVING FACILITY

If you or a loved one are no longer able to live alone, you might want to consider an assisted-living facility, where you’ll have access to a wide range of services, including meals, transportation, medical care and social activities. But keep in mind that since all assisted-living facilities aren’t the same, it’s a good idea to take a tour of several of them before you make a decision. While you are visiting, here are some topics you should ask about. 

1. Quality of Care

How you or your loved one will be treated is the top priority, so find out if the facility is licensed and certified by the state, and also how it ensures the quality of care it offers its residents. It’s important to know how process for filing a complaint in the event of an issue, as well as how complaints are dealt with. Does each patient have a primary point of contact that the family works with? Perhaps most importantly, find out how health emergencies are handled and the emergency hospital they use.  

2. The Monthly Charges

Assisted living costs vary widely. In addition to the monthly rent amount, find out if and when that charge be increased and by how much. Does the rent go up if the resident’s level of care changes? What are the charges if both you and your spouse live there and the two of you require different levels of care? And, if costs do increase, does the facility offer financial help for those who might no longer be able to pay? It’s important to know if apartments are available immediately, what kinds of apartments are available and, if not, how long the wait list currently is for the exact type you want. 

3. What’s Included  

The little things add up, so inquire about if you have to pay extra for services such as special diets; utilities; cable and internet; laundry; housekeeping; and transportation to doctor’s appointments, church services or shopping. Are services offered as a bundled price per month or a la carte? If they are bundled, what do the bundles include? Be aware that not all facilities provide the same options for the same price. 

4. Medical Care  

Again, medical care and options vary widely. Make sure to ask if you are permitted to choose your own doctor, therapist or pharmacy. Who would be responsible for giving you your medications? Are dental care and eye care included in your monthly fee, and are they provided on-site? Who decides if a resident needs a higher level of care or must be transferred to a different facility? Make sure to check into the professional qualifications of the staff, and ask if staff members are qualified to handle medical emergencies. 

5. Meals  

Find out if they offer flexible meal options or if everyone eats the same food. Does the facility have an experienced chef and staff that will be able to serve residents three healthy meals a day? Do the residents eat together in a dining hall, or can they eat in their room? Does it cost extra to have meals delivered to their room? Ask for a copy of the meal schedule and perhaps come back during a meal time to see firsthand how it’s handled. 

6. Safety  

Does the building have a security system? Are residents permitted to leave the building on their own, and how do staff members keep up with their whereabouts? Is there an emergency plan in case of fire? Is there a plan to evacuate residents if the building is in the path of a hurricane or other natural disaster?  

7. Recreational Activities  

Ask if the facility has a recreation director whose job is to provide activities for the residents. Are excursions planned so residents can go shopping, to church or to the movies? Review the facility’s current activity schedule to get an idea of what’s offered and whether or not it fits your needs.  

Make sure all these questions are answered to your satisfaction. Otherwise, it will increase the stress and uncertainty surrounding moving yourself or your loved one into an assisted-living facility.  

Do you need more information about how to choose the assisted-living facility that’s right for you? Check with Nye Health Services, which offers independent living and assisted living at 5 locations in Fremont, Lincoln, Norfolk, S Sioux City, Nebraska and Jackson, Wyoming. Live an independent and active life with the comfort of knowing support is available. The assistance you need, when you need it, is here with 24-hour access to a top-notch nursing team. For more information, visit Nye Health Services online or call (402) 753-1400.  

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