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Tampa Estate Planning Attorney > Blog > Estate Planning > Who’s Afraid Of Skilled Nursing Facilities?

Who’s Afraid Of Skilled Nursing Facilities?


You can tell just by a quick exploration of an estate planning law firm’s website that nursing home planning is part of the process.  When you are in middle age, and your every moment is taken up by parenting or work, going to a nursing home or assisted living facility seems like something that can only happen in the distant future.  Furthermore, the mental exercise of nursing home planning tends to attribute a sense of finality to moving to a facility where you will receive assistance with mundane tasks.  In reality, things are more complicated than that.  Yes, some seniors choose to sell their empty nests and move to a retirement home, offsetting the cost through long-term care insurance and playing it by ear about how much assistance they will need.  This does not mean, however, that those who choose to age in place will never require or receive residential care, at least not until they have reached an advanced age and their health has permanently deteriorated.  For a more realistic view of nursing home planning, one that includes the possibility of one or more temporary stays in a skilled nursing facility, contact a Tampa estate planning lawyer.

Paying for Skilled Nursing Care Is the Easy Part

A skilled nursing facility shares some characteristics with a hospital and others with a nursing home.  Skilled nursing facilities, like hospitals, aim to improve the patient’s health, whereas nursing homes simply aim to stop the patient’s health from getting worse.  Patients move from a hospital to a skilled nursing facility when they have completed a surgery or other treatment for an acute condition and are stable enough to be released from the hospital, but they require rehabilitation before they can live independently.  Therefore, for the weeks that you are in a skilled nursing facility, physical therapists and occupational therapists help you regain the strength and motor control you need to function independently at home, while nurses administer medication and assist with tasks like walking and bathing.

If you are at least 65 years old, Medicare will pay for up to 100 days of treatment in a skilled nursing facility after a hospitalization.  If you are younger than 65, you may be able to pay through Medicaid, employer-provided health insurance, or long-term care insurance.

Coping With a New Normal After Your Release From the Skilled Nursing Facility Is the Hard Part

The services that skilled nursing facilities provide are, by nature, of short duration.  Getting back to the shape you were in before the illness or injury that landed you in the hospital is only the best-case scenario.  Some patients do not regain enough function to live independently at home.  If this happens to you, you might be able to rely on family caregivers or home health aides.  You might also need to move to a nursing home.  Some patients have even gone straight from a skilled nursing facility to hospice care.  In any case, your best coping strategy is detailed planning.

Contact David Toback About Nursing Home Planning

A Central Florida estate planning lawyer can help you plan for care you might need in nursing homes or skilled nursing facilities.  Contact David Toback in Tampa, Florida to set up a consultation.




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