Within the past twenty years the nation has seen an increase in home care. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services found that over half of home care patients received help for at least one ADL (activities of daily living). This included 83% of patients requiring bathing or showering assistance, followed by dressing at 39%, transferring to or from a bed or chair at 30%, and using the restroom at 22%. It is also important to remember that transferring to or from a bed or chair could also include assistance in walking.
24 hour care is something very important to consider especially if your loved one is a fall risk. Other care such as medical or skilled nursing facilities would be a better option for those whose primary need is treatment and management of chronic health conditions. The most prevalent conditions that typically need assistance are heart disease, diabetes, cerebral vascular disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. “Not only do skilled nurses provide chronic condition treatment, they also provide education and training to help older adults better manage their condition themselves.”
However, it’s essential to keep in mind that although these chronic care facilities to provide medical care, they do not provide 24 hour personal care or companionship. The average ratio of nurse to patient is 1:4 during the day and typically during the night there’s only one nurse on staff. This is often the reason why family members consider hiring a non-medical care provider while their loved one is a resident at a skilled nursing facility or assisted living center.