Re­ti­re­ment ter­mi­no­lo­gy: w­hat does it me­an?

George Herald - Southern Cape Property Guide & Auto Dealer - - News - Www.se­ni­or­ser­vi­ce.co.za

As­si­ted li­ving, in­de­pen­dent li­ving, frail ca­re, mid­ca­re. For a per­son in­ves­ti­ga­ting re­ti­re­ment op­ti­ons for a fa­mi­ly mem­ber, all the­se terms can be qui­te con­fu­sing! Terms such as pos­t­o­pe­ra­ti­ve ca­re, sub-a­cu­te ca­re, step-do­wn and con­va­les­cen­ce are al­so fre­quent­ly u­sed in the tra­de. So, w­hat do all the­se terms me­an?

In­de­pen­dent li­ving, li­fe in a re­ti­re­ment vil­la­ge:

T­his term des­cri­bes a per­son who is per­fect­ly a­ble to li­ve in a re­ti­re­ment vil­la­ge as s/he is ca­pa­ble to li­ve in­de­pen­dent­ly wit­hout the as­sis­tan­ce of nur­sing s­taff. S/he would be ex­pected to still d­ri­ve, cook, shop and ta­ke ca­re of her/his fi­nan­ci­al af­fairs. S/he would still be a­ble to so­ci­a­li­se and or­ga­ni­se so­ci­al e­vents.

As­sis­ted li­ving/mid­ca­re:

The­se terms are very si­mi­lar. T­hey des­cri­be a per­son who is star­ting to re­qui­re a litt­le as­sis­tan­ce. Ge­ne­ral­ly, the per­son is in her/his la­te 70s, e­ar­ly 80s and has been li­ving al­o­ne, but is no lon­ger co­ping with the re­qui­re­ments of dai­ly li­fe. T­hey may al­so be needing so­me as­sis­tan­ce in mo­bi­li­sing or wa­shing or with ta­king their dai­ly me­di­ca­ti­on… T­his per­son could li­ve al­o­ne with the as­sis­tan­ce of a ca­rer, or could mo­ve in­to a re­ti­re­ment ho­me w­he­re ca­re is pro­vi­ded for all re­si­dents. Ge­ne­ral­ly, pe­op­le re­qui­ring mid­ca­re en­joy so­ci­al e­vents to be or­ga­ni­sed for them as t­hey find the or­ga­ni­sing and ca­te­ring to be too cum­bers­o­me.

Frail ca­re:

At the frail ca­re sta­ge, a per­son would re­qui­re a lot of nur­sing and he/she may need help with dres­sing and wa­shing and toi­leting and may or may not be be­drid­den. A frail per­son may al­so be phy­si­cal­ly all rig­ht but men­tal­ly frail, re­qui­ring con­stant su­per­vi­si­on. A men­tal­ly frail per­son could be exhi­bi­ting signs of se­ni­le de­men­tia (Al­z­hei­mers, vas­cu­lar de­men­tia or ot­her forms of de­men­tia) and, as such, may be con­fu­sed, dis­o­rien­ted, a­gi­ta­ted, re­st­less, anx­i­ous. On the ot­her hand, a per­son who is suf­fe­ring from e­ar­ly sta­ges of de­men­tia, who on­ly needs a litt­le o­rien­ta­ti­on from ti­me to ti­me and who is still so­ci­al and a­ble to so­ci­a­li­se, would be be­st look­ed af­ter in a mid­ca­re en­vi­ron­ment.

It is im­por­tant to point out that each ca­re fa­ci­li­ty has their own de­fi­ni­ti­on and clas­si­fi­ca­ti­on for w­hat t­hey call frail ca­re, mid­ca­re, as­sis­ted li­ving… so it is im­por­tant to dis­cuss the nur­sing re­qui­re­ments of a fa­mi­ly mem­ber with the ca­re fa­ci­li­ty be­fo­re ad­mit­ting them. Most ca­re fa­ci­li­ties, in any e­vent, will want to as­sess the pa­tient be­fo­re ad­mis­si­on in or­der to de­ter­mi­ne w­het­her t­hey are a­ble to pro­vi­de the ne­ces­sa­ry ca­re. T­hey may al­so re­qui­re a doc­tor's re­port on the pa­tient.

And w­hat a­bout all tho­se ot­her terms? Con­va­les­cen­ce, step-do­wn, sub-a­cu­te ca­re, post-o­pe­ra­ti­ve ca­re:

A per­son re­qui­ring t­his ty­pe of ca­re has pro­ba­bly spent so­me ti­me in hos­pi­tal be­cau­se of an il­l­ness or an o­pe­ra­ti­on and re­qui­res ca­re to re­cu­pe­ra­te be­fo­re going back ho­me. T­hey are me­di­cal­ly sta­ble and no lon­ger need to be in a hos­pi­tal en­vi­ron­ment, and can be dis­char­ged to a ca­re fa­ci­li­ty.

So­me of the­se ca­re fa­ci­li­ties are si­mi­lar to hos­pi­tals but do not ha­ve an ICU or a the­a­t­re. Ot­her fa­ci­li­ties are less for­mal and could be re­ti­re­ment ho­mes w­he­re a pa­tient can be nur­sed to a sta­ge w­he­re he/she can go back ho­me.

Ty­pi­cal si­tu­a­ti­ons w­he­re a fa­ci­li­ty such as t­his would be nee­ded is fol­lo­wing sur­ge­ry, stro­kes, he­art at­tacks, frac­tu­res, pneu­mo­nia, ac­ci­dents, falls and so on. So­me me­di­cal aids pay for the­se fa­ci­li­ties.

Re­ti­re­ment ho­me

"Re­ti­re­ment ho­me" is a­not­her na­me for "old age ho­me" or "nur­sing ho­me". So­me pe­op­le think that if t­hey are buying a cot­ta­ge or u­nit in a re­ti­re­ment vil­la­ge, t­hey are ac­tu­al­ly buying a re­ti­re­ment ho­me for them­sel­ves. T­his is in­cor­rect. A re­ti­re­ment ho­me is in fact a ca­re ho­me, old age ho­me or nur­sing ho­me w­he­re ca­re is pro­vi­ded on a 24/7 ba­sis.

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