Fact: Caregiving dilemmas beget new caregiving dilemmas. Just when you have succeeded in placing an aging parent in an assisted living residence and things are working out, a change in “health status” suddenly disqualifies him or her from staying there. You are duly notified you have 30 days to find new accommodations. Wait. What?
We tend to think of assisted living in terms “expandable assistance” as our aging parent becomes more dependent. That is a misconception. Assisted living residences comes with “fixed bandwidth” of assistance services based on a “fixed definition of functional ability and health status.” Fall outside of the acceptable health status or fall outside of assistance offerings, you have to move on.
Given this reality, families need to ask two key questions prior to placing an aging parent in an assisted living residence:
- What changes in functional ability or health status will disqualify a resident from remaining at your facility?
- What are the exact “assistance services” you provide and what services don’t you provide for a resident at your facility?
Bottom Line: Know the rules of the game before sign on.
This excellent article from CNN “Kicked out of assisted living: What can you do?” is a must read for all caregivers to better understand the implications of these limitations, the legal quagmire they created and how longterm care plans include a second step if you are going to use assisted living as your first move. Because sooner or later, it will be time to move again…Guaranteed