CNBC: Care Gap Between Independence and Nursing Home Looms for Aging Boomers

For some, a fall can trigger the inability to live independently at home, while still not qualifying or needing nursing home care, forming a “care gap” that’s on many aging boomer’s horizon, according to a Reuters article published on CNBC. 

The issue looms large because nearly three in four Americans over age 65 will require some form of long-term care during their lives, according to the National Clearinghouse for Long Term Care Information. And as many as 12 percent of nursing home residents are considered “low need” who could live in the community if they had the right support at home, according to the journal Health Affairs.

The long-term care industry is figuring out how to fill this care gap, but the price is not cheap. Licensed home health aides earn a median $19 per hour. Adult day care services average $61 per day. A one-bedroom apartment in an assisted living facility runs about $3,300 per month, according to the 2012 Genworth Cost of Care Survey.

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It can be hard for families to assess when the assisted living model – even with increased services – is inadequate, and some people stay in those settings for too long.

“Some places are holding on to people maybe for too long or accepting them when they shouldn’t,” says Byron Cordes, president of the National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers.

He recommends that families use an independent care manager to assess whether mom needs more care than the facility can provide and whether and how extra help can be brought in.

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Another option is building an in-home nursing home, for those with adequate financial means, the article continues, while utilizing senior care technology or local Programs for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) can be an option for others. 

Read the full article at CNBC.

Written by Alyssa Gerace

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