As you navigate the process of looking into assisted living communities you will learn a lot about what they offer residents. You may be asking yourself if there really is a difference between one community versus another. Is it worth the trouble to learn about and tour each place before making a choice? If they all offer the same options then why spend a lot of time making a decision? All assisted living communities that are licensed are required to meet some basic standards in order to operate. Beyond those basic standards you will find that there can be a significant difference in the options offered by assisted living communities. Two of the main differences you will notice between communities are the levels of care and the amenities that are available.
In order to operate in the state of California, assisted living communities must have an active license. The state handles the process of licensing these communities and does regular inspections to insure that the minimum standards are being maintained. If there is ever a complaint or problem with a community the state will investigate and decide on the best course for resolution. The main goal of the licensing standards is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of the residents. Any assisted living you look at with a license in good standing will have, at some point, met these basic requirements.
Levels of Care
Assisted living communities can vary in the levels of care they offer to residents. Knowing the type of care available will help you ascertain whether or not a community can handle your current and future needs. Choosing an assisted living that offers a wide range of care options can minimize your need for disruptive transitions in the future. For example, some communities offer everything from basic medication management to extensive help with all personal care tasks. If you think your need for assistance may increase over time then an assisted living that offers several levels of care is a great option. If you want additional information about the potential levels of care in assisted living you can read more here.
The differences between assisted living communities are the most apparent when you start looking at the amenities offered. The extra amenities offered by a community can vary significantly. Some places offer residents resort-style amenities such as fine dining, exercise classes, salon services, and more. Many older adults are delighted to discover the amenities offered at top notch assisted living communities. Not all places are created equally when it comes to amenities. Ask for a list of amenities at every community you consider so you can make an informed decision.
The best way to get an understanding of the differences between assisted living communities is to take tours. You can observe interactions between staff and residents, explore the grounds, and even participate in a community activity. As you take tours you will see firsthand that there can be major differences in the levels of care and amenities that assisted living communities offer.