Preparing for Long Term Senior Care
Nobody wants to consider needing the services provided by a long term senior care community, let alone prepare for a life in which they can’t care for themselves. Likewise, most adult children fear that they will not be able to meet the care needs of their aging parents.
There is no question that the decision regarding such a placement is difficult. In many cases, moving into a long term care facility is seen as the last stop before dying, and loved ones feel guilt and frustration from not being able to provide the needed care. These thoughts and feelings have nothing to do with the quality of the facility’s care, but with the loss and grief they experience at this time of change.
However, the long term care community can help with this very tough time in life’s journey. From admission to discharge, social workers play a vital role in:
- Promoting social and psychological well-being for long term senior care residents and their families
- Helping the prospective resident and their family decide whether this is the right place for them
- Providing resources to assist with financial planning
Supporting Residents Every Day
Once admitted, the social worker supports residents and families every day by:
- Developing an individualized plan of care by performing a comprehensive social history and psychosocial assessment (which includes the older adult’s preferences, likes, and dislikes)
- Helping the resident and family address feelings about the decision to move into a long term senior care community
- Work with the resident, their family, and other appropriate staff members to implement the older adult’s care plan
By helping residents adapt to living in their new environment, enabling social functioning though group activities and one-on-one interactions, and mediating issues among residents, families, and staff, social workers have a unique skill base that can be vital when addressing the needs of the resident.
Serving Individual & Diverse Needs
In addition, long term senior care facilities serve individuals with diverse needs, including:
- Those with recent impairments in daily living due to a surgery
- Residents with advanced chronic conditions including dementia
- People who are approaching the end of their lives
Social workers can help ensure appropriateness and continuity of care for transfers and discharges from the long term care community. They also can connect residents and their families with resources and facilitate transitions to other levels of care. Likewise, social workers in long term senior care communities guide families, residents, and care providers through difficult conversations that help their residents, families, and staff, prepare for and cope with loss.
Dealing with the Increasing Demand for Long Term Senior Care
As the population continues to age and live longer, experts predicted that the need for long term care will increase dramatically. As a result, residents and their families researching and comparing long term care facilities should highly consider the qualifications of on-site social workers and the number of residents they care for. To find out more about what Bethesda can provide for you or a loved one, contact us today.