Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know when my loved one needs help?
Visit your loved one frequently and watch for changes in their daily routine. If it appears they are unsafe, not eating properly or "just not themselves", it may be time to seek assistance from a medical professional.
How do I approach the subject with my family member?
Be honest and show genuine concern. Ask the individual if they have thought about getting needed assistance. Encourage their involvement and participation in the process of selecting a new home offering assistance. Tour different communities and begin to determine the level of care your loved one needs. Sometimes a doctor, neighbor, nurse or clergy can help you discuss your loved ones needs in a sensitive and caring way.
How can I pay for the costs of assisted living?
Most people pay for the cost of assisted living with their own assets. This is often called "private pay". Many long-term care insurance policies will help pay for assisted living and some veterans and their surviving spouses can qualify for the Aid and Attendance benefits available through the Veterans Administration. Following two years of private pay, our certified communities may accept Medicaid Waiver on a limited basis. Unfortunately, Medicare does not cover the costs of assisted living.
As long term care policies vary and all of the state and Federal regulations that relate to available benefits often can be quite confusing, please call us and we will be happy to help you understand your alternatives and to help you navigate through all of the details. It's one of the many ways we help you make the right decision!
What is the difference between assisted living and a nursing home?
An assisted living community offers residents assistance with self care, socialization and proper nutrition. Assisted Living is less restrictive and promotes independence, dignity and choice. They are usually based on a social model rather than a medical model.
A nursing home is an institutional setting that offers skilled medical care and rehabilitation to individuals who may not be able to care for themselves. Medicare and Medicaid are usually accepted. Many individuals are admitted to a nursing home for a short term stay for rehabilitation following a hospitalization for an illness or injury. Once rehabilitation is completed, the resident may transition to a less restrictive environment such as an assisted living home with supplemental home care services. Other residents transition to long-term care and make the nursing home their permanent lifestyle. Nursing homes generally employ medical models of care.
How can I tell if assisted living is appropriate for my family member or friend?
Once a community has been selected by the resident and /or family, an assessment will be conducted by the Director of Health Care to determine the level of care appropriate for the new resident. An individualized care plan will then be developed. If an individual is totally bedridden, unable to assist in transferring from the bed to the chair/toilet, or requires ongoing skilled care such as tube feedings, dressing changes, or are harmful to themselves or others, the individual may be beyond the assisted living level of care and may be a candidate for skilled nursing home care.
Do assisted living communities offer transportation?
Yes, all Heritage communities offer both scheduled and "as needed" transportation to and from appointments and activities. It is important to discuss the transportation policy how to best utilize the convenience it offers.
What happens if my family member still drives but wants to come to an assisted living community?
Residents may have cars. Check with each community to discuss the policy regarding personal vehicles, the availability of garages or outdoor parking and any special requirements or restriction.
Can my family member keep their primary physician?
Yes, choosing their own healthcare provider is a resident’s right.
“I really like the way that Northern Hills is tucked up into the neighborhood here. It made it easy to transition because I’ve lived in this area my entire life!” ~ Nora O.