Figures from the Administration on Aging (AOA) show seniors 65 years and older comprise about 15% of the total American population. By 2040, this number will have risen to 21.7% of the population. Of course, some seniors live in nursing homes that offer institutionalized care while others choose to live at home. Seniors who opt for the latter option and hire home care aides get to enjoy the following benefits:
Cost Savings with Home Care
Research published by the Office of Policy Development and Research (PD&R) shows that in-home care for seniors can save Americans and the government billions of dollars. In particular, the PD&R says aging at home could help federal government sponsored programs including Medicaid and Medicare cut expenditure related to long-term healthcare for seniors. In addition, a comparative effectiveness review conducted by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) found that care costs per individual in a nursing home far exceed similar costs for individuals receiving home or community-based care. A study published in the Journal of Health & Social Policy found that home-based care translates to a national average public expenditure saving of $43,947 per senior annually when compared to Medicaid-funded institutional care. These savings could be used to improve the care of seniors in America significantly.
Aging in Dignity
In-home care enables seniors to maintain their dignity. This is according to an article published in the journal The Nation’s Health. For starters, seniors who remain at home are unlikely to experience elderly abuse that is relatively common at institutional care facilities. In addition, seniors who spend their sunset years at home enjoy higher levels of personal privacy than seniors who enter nursing homes. It is also worth noting that nursing homes have a rigidity and daily schedule that is determined by others meaning it may not appeal to some seniors. In comparison, seniors who age at home largely maintain huge leeway in determining their diet, daily activities, and freedom of movement. These aspects enable the elderly to age in a safe environment.
Easily Access Care Services
Seniors who remain at home can easily access the care they need via companies that offer non-medical home care services. For instance, a senior can hire a home care aide to help with cooking, laundry, shopping, grooming, dressing, and light housekeeping duties. In fact, the Office of Policy Development & Research says aging in place may enable seniors to access services that nursing home residents may be unable to access. This is because policymakers even those who champion causes related to the elderly tend to focus on controlling costs, which in turn degrades the quality and availability of care. Sadly, cost-cutting measures have resulted in hourly limits, fixed expenditure ceilings, geographic limitations, and service delivery constraints. This means some institutionalized seniors end up not receiving the care services that they really need.
By spending their sunset years at home, seniors are able to maintain social connections that they have built over time. For instance, an elderly person can lead a normal existence including attending social engagements, going shopping, and event attending hospital appointments with the help of a home care aide.This prevents the social isolation that most institutionalized seniors experience. A survey conducted by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) found that 41% of seniors intend to remain at home for the primary reason of maintaining social ties among friends, family members, and neighbors. Remember, seniors who join nursing homes must build new relationships among fellow residents and workers. However, such relationships are unlikely to be as deep and as meaningful as relationships that were built over decades of interacting with friends and family members.
Better Quality of Life for an Aging Person
A recent study appearing in the journal Nursing Research says that aging at home may enhance a person’s quality of life substantially. This includes better health outcomes in terms of cognitive function, depression, and incontinence. In turn, this leads to cost savings because healthy seniors require minimal care.
Longer Life Expectancy and Independent Living
The Office of Policy Development & Research says aging at home enhances the life expectancy of the elderly substantially. This is because seniors who opt for in-home care continue to engage in activities that increase muscular strength as well as reduce the risk of depression and anxiety. At the same time, they remain engaged in civic activities within their communities/neighborhoods while living independently.
Home Care offers much needed companionship to seniors, especially those that live alone. For instance, a home care aide can accompany a senior to hospital, religious events, when visiting friends, or even when going for a cup of coffee. This is in addition to helping with transportation and providing medication reminders, which enables the elderly to maintain a semblance of normality during their sunset years.
If you have a senior living alone at home in Boca Raton or any of the cities in Palm Beach and Broward counties, consider contacting our home care service to help him/her with daily activities such as cooking, grooming, and attending hospital appointments. Home Care will help your loved one age in dignity, enjoy better quality of life and easily access care services.