Personal Care Home Requirements and Qualifications You Need to Know

A senior woman and a nurse having a fun conversation with each other.

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If you’ve been noticing that your loved one requires more care than they can get at home, it might be the right time to consider a move to personal care. In personal care, your loved one can stay independent while still getting the care they need. But who qualifies for personal care homes? Are there requirements people may not know about?

Typically, personal care homes require potential future residents to be medically and cognitively healthy. Your loved one should be over the age of 55 and in need of help with some daily activities. If this sounds like your loved one, they might qualify for a move to personal care!

What Is a Personal Care Home?

A personal care home, like ours at Juniper Village at Mount Joy, is a place where your loved one can get the personalized attention and care they need around the clock. It’s a warm, welcoming environment that’s designed to feel just like home, but with the added benefit of having a team of trained caregivers available to help your loved one.

These communities are designed for adults who want:

  • Independence and autonomy
  • Access to programs, classes, amenities, and other on-site services
  • Trained caregivers available to help them with some daily tasks

Personal care homes are ideal for older adults who need a hand here and there with their daily needs but want to remain independent where possible. Every community resident gets a customized care plan tailored to their unique needs so they get the care they deserve to feel nurtured, loved, and supported.

However, there are a few factors to consider before your loved one applies to move to a personal care home.

Medical Needs in a Personal Care Home

The first thing to think about is your loved one’s health. Consider the following:

  • Are they able to manage their own medication?
  • Do they have any chronic or long-term medical conditions?
  • Do they need around-the-clock access to medical support?
  • Are they at risk of falling and hurting themself?
  • Do they have any specific accommodations needed?

Our team at Juniper Village at Mount Joy includes several medical professionals, and we’re able to accommodate our community members. However, this isn’t the case for every personal care home in the USA. Some homes may recommend skilled nursing or another alternative form of senior living if they’re worried about your loved one’s health.

What Is Skilled Nursing?

Skilled nursing is a type of community living for older adults—specifically those experiencing a long-term medical condition or recovering from a recent injury or illness. In these communities, your loved one is surrounded by licensed health professionals, registered nurses, and therapists.

These communities offer round-the-clock intensive care and supervision for adults in need of medical attention and continuous support. They provide medical care similar to that offered by a hospital but with a strong person-centric approach. The community should feel much less clinical and more home-like than a true hospital setting.

Skilled nursing also offers classes, events, and clubs to promote social engagement between community members. These communities are an excellent way for your loved one to get long-term medical attention from a team of trained healthcare professionals.

Consider Cognitive Abilities

Another important thing to consider is your loved one’s cognitive abilities. This plays a crucial role in determining whether or not a personal care home would be the right fit.

Personal care focuses heavily on promoting independence and nurturing your loved one so they get the care they need. But when conditions like dementia, Alzheimer’s, and other forms of memory impairment come into play, things can get a little more complicated.

If your loved one has been diagnosed with a form of memory impairment or is experiencing a significant amount of cognitive decline, we may recommend a move to memory care instead.

What Is Memory Care?

Memory care communities are similar to personal care homes, but with a twist—they’re uniquely designed to help support older adults experiencing some form of cognitive decline. The staff in these communities are experienced and well-trained in supporting adults with memory impairment.

Your loved one gets access to programs and events tailored toward slowing the progression of their cognitive condition. They get support, therapy, and more from a team of trained caregivers. And the environment itself is designed to counteract some of the complications caused by dementia.

So, if your loved one is experiencing some form of cognitive decline, they might benefit from the structured, supportive environment a personal care home provides.

Who Should Move to a Personal Care Home?

A personal care home staff serving food to one of its senior residents

How can you determine where your loved one should move? It helps to assess their abilities, health, and cognitive function to determine the answer. Personal care homes are ideal for individuals who need assistance with daily activities like:

  • Bathing and personal hygiene
  • Dressing
  • Meal preparation and eating
  • Managing medications

If your loved one wants a bit of help with their daily life but wants to live somewhere they can live independently, personal care may just be the way to go. But if they’re living with a chronic medical condition, memory impairment, or any other significant condition, skilled nursing or memory care may be more ideal so they can get the care they need.

Personal Care in Mount Joy

If you think personal care is the right choice for your loved one, come see us at Juniper Village at Mount Joy. You can see our community in action, and we’d love to show you around and answer any questions you might have. Schedule a tour of our community online today.

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