A few helpful terms to understand as you shop for an assisted living or memory care community.
Active Adult Community: Typically offer a choice of houses, rather than apartments. Some include a central clubhouse with a variety of planned activities. Monthly fees may cover services such as housekeeping and yard maintenance, but meals are usually additional.
Activities of Daily Living: Often referred to as ADL’s. These are daily activities such as grooming, bathing, eating, dressing, toileting, medication management, transferring, and other self-care tasks associated with daily living.
Alzheimer’s Disease: A progressive, neurodegenerative disease categorized by a loss of function or death of nerve cells in the brain that leads to loss of memory and learning. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia.
Apartments: Senior apartments are for seniors who are independent. Meals, activities, programs, and services are typically not included in the rent. Aegis Living does refer to our private rooms as apartments.
Assisted Living: Multi-unit assisted living communities provide 24/7 assistance with the activities of daily living (like grooming, dressing, bathing), medication management, and personal care. Aegis Living operates assisted living communities throughout Washingon, California, and Nevada.
Behavioral Health: A range of geriatric psychiatric services either as an in-patient or out-patient basis. In some cases, Medicare and Medicaid provide financial assistance.
Board and Care / Adult Family Home: A single-family home licensed to provide assistance to seniors for the activities of daily living, such as medication, grooming, and bathing. Can also be licensed to provide skilled nursing care under the supervision of a licensed nurse.
Care Management: Offering advisory services on a wide range of senior issues, researching a new home, choosing in-home services, and a variety of financial options. A care manager will evaluate a senior’s healthcare needs, housing options, and financial needs to recommend a care plan.
CCRC or Continuing Care Retirement Community: A full-service community that provides a continuum of care including retirement, assisted living, and skilled nursing services all in one long-term contract at a single campus. There is an entrance fee or buy-in fee.
Day Stay: A program providing a range of geriatric day services including activities, socialization, nutrition, nursing, and rehabilitation. Not all programs provide all services.
Durable Power of Attorney: A designated person to oversee an individual’s personal affairs if they were to become mentally or physically incapacitated. Keep a clear record of such agreements on hand. It’s recommended to use a reputable lawyer to draft a durable power of attorney.
Group Home: Serves the elderly and disabled who need constant medical supervision but cannot live independently. These persons may be medicated but must be self-compliant and ambulatory, although assistance with a wheelchair or walker is often allowed.
Home Care or Home Healthcare: This includes both companies that provide licensed healthcare services in the home and those companies that provide non-medical services such as bathing, dressing, meal prep, or transportation. In some cases, Medicare and Medicaid may provide financial assistance.
Hospice: Either offered in-home or at a senior care facility. Services include pain management, and emotional, spiritual and physical support services for end-of-life care. In some cases, Medicare and Medicaid may provide financial assistance.
Independent Living: Independent living housing is for seniors who still have the physical capability and mental capacity to live on their own but wish for more companionship with others their age. Services, amenities, and activities are catered to a healthy, active senior. Independent living is not a housing option for someone who cannot live alone.
Life’s Neighborhood ™: The core of Aegis Living’s memory care communities. Life’s Neighborhood™ is a nationally recognized program developed by Aegis Living designed to help improve the quality of life and increase enjoyment for our residents living with memory loss.
Living Will: A legal document that outlines the wishes of an individual regarding life-saving devices and procedures in the event of a terminal injury or illness when they are no longer able to make decisions of their own.
Long-Term Care: Care to provide medical and supportive services to an individual who has lost the ability to function due to disability or illness.
Long-Term Care Insurance: An insurance policy that pays for care services for the elderly or chronically ill. This care is either provided in a community or at-home with a nurse or aide. Terms and coverage vary by policy.
Medicaid: Public assistance funded by individual U.S. states for people who are unable to pay for healthcare. Medicaid can only be accessed when all assets are depleted. Income eligibility must be met to qualify.
Medicare: Medicare is the U.S. federal health insurance program for individuals over the age of 65 years and for those with disabilities.
Medication Management: The formalized procedure for the management of self-administered medications. A program includes dosage and timing for residents in assisted living and can include coordination with their personal physician.
Memory Care: Communities offering specialized programs for those living with memory loss due to Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia. Programs are offered by residential, assisted living, and nursing facilities.
Nursing Home: Also known as Skilled Nursing Facility, Nursing Facility, and Convalescent Home. A licensed facility that provides 24/7 nursing care, room and board, and activities for those with chronic or long-term care illnesses. One step below hospital acute care. Regular medical supervision and rehabilitation therapy available. Nursing homes are eligible to participate in Medicaid programs.
Palliative Care: An area of healthcare that focuses on pain relief and preventing chronic suffering. The goal is to improve the quality of life including physical, emotional, social, and spiritual concerns that arise with advanced illness.
Rehab: Comprehensive rehabilitation services to include in-patient and out-patient treatments designed to restore, heal, and strengthen.
Registered Nurse: Also known as RN. A registered nurse passed a state board examination and is licensed by a state agency to practice nursing. A minimum of two years of college is required, along with passing state exams. In an assisted living community, an RN will assess a resident’s care needs, develop and monitor personalized care plans in conjunction with their physician.
Residential: Typically, single-family homes licensed to provide senior care and assistance with medications and the activities of daily living. Known as Adult Family Home in Washington or Board and Care in California.
Retirement: An independent senior housing option with amenities such as meals, activities, and transportation included in a monthly fee. Retirement, senior living, and independent are often interchangeable.
Short-Term Care: Also known as respite care, or a respite stay. A temporary stay in an assisted living community or other senior housing option that provides all the services that a permanent resident would enjoy for a short period from 2 weeks to a month.
Sub-Acute: A licensed facility that provides nursing services and specialized higher levels of care.