Elder law attorneys, with expertise in estate planning, incapacity planning, and end-of-life care for seniors, are essential in working to protect a vulnerable population.
The population of seniors over 65 is expected to increase exponentially over the next decade. A study by the Office of Policy Development and Research exposed the country’s unpreparedness for housing the aged population. America has three major housing issues for seniors: affordability, physical accessibility, and access to medical care and other services. There is a need for creative solutions to housing.
Innovative long-term care housing for seniors tries to solve these problems. These new potential living arrangements for seniors may provide older people with the care, protection, and resources they need to age peacefully.
What Services Do Seniors Need From a Long-Term Care Provider?
As people age, their needs change. An ideal living environment for older people will meet their personal and medical needs while remaining affordable.
Seniors need access to nutritious foods, transportation to and from medical appointments, the ability to exercise safely, and community connection to promote positive mental health.
Modern long-term care housing for seniors intends to increase the number of options for seniors while meeting these needs.
University-Based Retirement Communities
One creative living option for older people is university retirement communities. University retirement communities are part of a college campus and house and educate older people.
Colleges and universities establish retirement communities in several ways. A university may partner with an existing retirement community and provide it with resources. Some universities sell their property to a third party at a discounted rate to build a retirement community.
You won’t live in a dorm if you choose a university retirement community. Depending on the community, housing units may include single-family homes, apartments, condos, or townhouses.
In addition to receiving free and discounted classes, university retirement communities offer other benefits to their residents. Some community amenities include social activities, health resources, transportation services, access to university facilities, and dining services.
This living option can get expensive and must be paid out-of-pocket. A resident must pay an entry and monthly maintenance fee, which can add up to several thousand dollars.
Dementia villages began 25 years ago in Amsterdam by nurses who wanted a safer alternative for their parents who suffered from memory issues; dementia villages cater only to older people living with dementia. Several countries worldwide have adopted this housing model, including the United States.
Everything a resident might need is available in the community created by the facility. In most dementia villages, you can find hairstylists, grocery stores, libraries, restaurants, social events, and access to medical care.
Dementia villages offer centralized care, including on-site, live-in staff. The care team in dementia villages lives among the residents, and they become intimately familiar with their patients’ conditions. Staff track patient progress and create an effective treatment plan for each resident.
According to the World Health Organization, 55 million people worldwide are living with dementia. Each year, nearly 8 million new patients get diagnosed with dementia. Over the next decade, nearly 80 million people will receive a dementia diagnosis. The time to learn more about effective treatment for dementia is now.
Routine helps improve the quality of life for seniors living with dementia. Dementia villages offer services that promote an increased quality of life for residents, including:
- Safe physical activity and increased mobility
- Healthy meals
- Social interaction
- Art and music activities
The Green House Project
The Green House Project is one of the most well-known nonprofit organizations leading the charge to reimagine housing options and improve quality of life for seniors.
The Green House Project serves seniors and their families. The organization has built 400 homes across the United States over the past 17 years. Green House homes operate efficiently to care for older people. Some of the available services include:
- Dementia care
- Assisted living
- Licensed skilled nursing
Each home is private, with easy access to the outdoors. The homes are self-contained, and each resident has a private room and bathroom. The homes create a community of seniors who can connect and create friends.
Planning for Your Long-Term Housing?
There are many options for your long-term care. Contacting your elder law attorney can be the best next step to learning your options.