How to Choose Skilled Nursing
A nursing home, also known as a skilled nursing facility, has registered nurses who help provide 24-hour care to people who can no longer care for themselves due to physical, emotional or mental conditions. A licensed physician supervises each patient care, and a nurse or other medical professional is almost always on the premises. Most nursing homes to have two basic types of services: Skilled medical care and custodial care.
Skilled medical care includes services of trained professionals that are for a limited period of time following an injury or illness:
- A registered nurse doing wound care and changing dressing after a major surgery, or administering and monitoring intravenous antibiotics for a sever infection.
- A physician therapist helping to correct strength and balance problems that have made it difficult for a patient to walk or get on and off the bed, toilet or furniture.
- A speech therapist helping a person regain the ability to communicate after a stroke.
- An occupational therapist helping a person relearn independent self-care in areas such as dressing, grooming and eating.
Skilled care also might be needed on a long-term basis if a resident requires injections, ventilation, or other treatment of that nature. Custodial or personal care includes assistance with what are know as activities of daily living, such as bathing; dressing; eating; grooming; getting in and out of bed or walking around; or toileting (incontinence care).
People who are able to recover from a disabling injury or illness might temporarily need the custodial care s they are getting back to being independent again. For people who are losing their ability to function due to chronic disease and increasing
frailty, custodial care might be a long-term need. In the most severe cases where a person is bed-bound ongoing supervision by a registered nurse is necessary, along with custodial care, to ensure proper hydration and nutrition and to prevent skin breakdown.
If a custodial care resident becomes ill or injured, they might spend a period of time in skilled care, and then return to custodial care. Whether a resident is under skilled or custodial care it is important in terms of who provides the care and who pays for the services provided.
Source of this article – Heritage Media 2014 Resource Guide.
Click here for a check list of Questions to Ask when searching for a Nursing Home.