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What is Assisted Living?
A housing and health care alternative combining independence with personal care in a warm, dignified, community setting.
An Assisted Living residence is defined as a "special combination of housing, personalized supportive services and health care designed to meet the needs -- both scheduled and unscheduled -- of those who need help with activities of daily living."
What is the philosophy of Assisted Living?
Assisted Living facilities subscribe to a 10-point philosophy of care:
Who lives in our Assisted Living residences?
Currently, more than a million Americans live in an estimated 20,000 Assisted Living residences. Our Assisted Living residents can be young or old, affluent or low income, frail or disabled. A typical resident is a woman in her eighties and is either widowed or single. Residents may suffer from Alzheimer's disease or other memory disorders. Residents may also need help with incontinence or mobility.
What do our Assisted Living residences look like?
Most of our Assisted Living residences are in warm cordial buildings with privacy and functionality. Residences may be free standing or housed with other residential options, such as independent living or nursing care. Most of our facilities have between 25 and 120 units. There is no single blueprint, because consumers' preferences and needs vary widely. Units may vary in size from one room to a full apartment.
How is Assisted Living regulated?
Our residences are regulated and licensed by the New York State Department of Health. Our providers and staff members have special training as a result of both New York State requirements and PAZ Healthcare policy. All of our residences comply with local building codes and fire safety regulations. We believe the most successful regulations are consumer drive, balancing the safety concerns we all share with the consumers' desires to retain their independence and freedom of choice.
What types of services are offered in our Assisted Living residences?
What about costs?
Costs vary with the residence, room size, and the types of services needed by the residents, generally less than the cost of home health services and nursing home care. A basic Assisted Living fee may cover all services or there may be additional charges for special services. Our Assisted Living residences charge month-to-month rates.
Who pays the bill for an Assisted Living residence?
Residents or their families generally pay the cost of care from their own financial resources. Depending on the nature of an individual's health insurance program or long-term care insurance policy, costs may be reimbursed. In addition, some residences have their own financial assistance programs. Government payments for Assisted Living residences has been limited. New York State offers subsidies for rent or services for low income elders. Others subsidies include an additional payment for those who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Medicaid.
What to look for when placing loved one for Long Term Care?
When the time comes to place your loved one in a long-term care facility, the decision can be difficult and often overwhelming.
Here are some questions you should ask at each facility you inspect in order to ensure quality care:
What is Dementia?
Dementia is an umbrella term used to describe the loss of cognitive or intellectual function. Many conditions can cause dementia. Dementia related to depression, drug interactions, and thyroid and other problems may be reversible if detected early. That’’s one of the reasons it’’s important to obtain a professional assessment, so that the actual cause can be identified and proper care provided. Several other diseases also cause dementia, such as Parkinson’’s, Creutzfeldt-Jakob, Huntington’’s, and multi-infarct or vascular disease, caused by multiple strokes in the brain.
What is Alzheimer's?
Alzheimer's disease (pronounced Alz-hi-merz) is a progressive, degenerative disease that attacks the brain and results in impaired memory, thinking and behavior. It affects an estimated 4 million American adults. When it was first diagnosed by German physician Alois Alzheimer in 1907, Alzheimer's disease was considered a rare disorder. Today, it is recognized as the most common cause of dementia. Alzheimer's disease is distinguished from other forms of dementia by characteristic changes in the brain that are visible only upon microscopic examination. Another characteristic of Alzheimer's disease is the reduced production of certain brain chemicals, especially acetylcholine, but also including norepinephrine, serotonin and soma-tostatin. These chemicals are necessary for normal communication between nerve cells.
What are the warning signs of Alzheimer’s?
The Alzheimer’s Association has developed a list of warning signs that include common symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease (some also apply to other dementias). Individuals who exhibit several of these symptoms should see a physician for a complete examination.
What is Parkinson's disease?
Parkinson's disease (PD) is a degenerative neurological disorder of the brain related to a depletion of a neurotransmitter called dopamine. PD strikes people of all ages and ethnic groups. The average age of diagnosis is 60. However, 10 - 20% of persons with PD develop it before the age of 50. About half of these are diagnosed before the age of 40. The cause of PD is still under investigation, however there may be multiple factors including genetic predisposition and exposure to environmental toxins. Symptoms can include: Rigidity or stiffness of arms, legs or neck Tremors, mostly in the hands (at rest) Instability in posture or balance Slowness in movement Secondary symptoms may include facial "masking", depression, confusion, difficulties in speech or swallowing. PD affects individuals differently, but if managed carefully, each person can live well.