Alternatives to residential care for your loved one
The current COVID-19 pandemic has turned all our lives upside down and brought significant changes to the way many of us go about our daily activities. If you have an elderly relative or friend you support, you may have noticed changes to their way of life that mean it may be time to consider alternative living arrangements or extra support so they can stay happy and healthy in their own home.
Decisions like these are difficult at the best of times, and the current pandemic certainly doesn’t make it any easier. However it’s important to remember that there are lots of services and support available to assist older people to continue living independently.
KinCare is here to help you and your loved one make the right choice.
What are the options?
There are two main options – residential care or in-home care.
Moving into residential care or long-term accommodation is often the traditional choice for older people who are finding it tough to live independently in their own homes. There are a range of residential options to choose from:
- Independent living in retirement villages or over 55’s communities;
- Assisted care facilities, where meals, housekeeping, laundry and garden care are provided; or
- Nursing homes, where people with the highest needs can receive the specialised medical help they need and, down the track, end of life care.
However, there’s no place like home for comfort and security, so that’s where in-home care can help. This type of service and support is for older people who want to stay living in their own homes for longer, but need some assistance to stay healthy and safe.
Studies have found that living at home longer has direct health benefits for older people and can even increase their life expectancy. In-home care can also mean your loved one maintains some independence, but gets support in areas where it’s needed.
In-home care could be as little as a few hours of personal care to help your loved one get ready for their day, to more complex care such as nursing support, clinical services or palliative care provided over longer periods.
If you’re worried about your loved one experiencing social isolation during the pandemic, some in-home care providers like KinCare also offer ways to help older people engage and interact online with others, or connect with family and friends who they are not able to see in person at the moment. If you’re not able to visit your loved one to assist with their shopping, meal preparation or keeping the house clean, KinCare can also provide services to assist with these tasks.
One other key benefit of in-home care is the opportunity to tailor the type of services your loved one accesses to their individual needs. This means they won’t pay for services or support they won’t use and you can build a customised care plan that can be updated as the needs of your loved one evolve.
There are cost considerations for both options and the amount you pay will depend on personal circumstances. Depending on your circumstances, your loved one may also be eligible for a government funding package.
Read our comparison of residential care and in-home care for more information about the sorts of costs involved and other differences.
To talk to KinCare about your situation and to learn more about how our services can support your loved one to stay living in their home longer, please call us on 1300 702 319.