What's a continuum of care? Simply put, it's peace of mind for residents of a senior living community and the people who love them.
The concept of continuum of care in senior living is the overarching component of a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) or Life Plan Community. At WesleyLife, we've evolved the CCRC/Life Plan concepts to one we call Communities for Healthy Living (CHLs) — campuses featuring several levels of living.
Levels of living are essentially a range of services that cover varying levels of care, including:
- Independent living
- Assisted living
- Memory care/memory support
- Short-term rehabilitation
- Long-term nursing care
What that list tells you is: Once an individual moves into one of our CHLs, we offer services and amenities to meet that person's needs, no matter how much their health situation should change.
The levels of living concept is a primary differentiator between WesleyLife and, for example, apartments or housing cooperatives ("co-ops") for older adults. Let's look at an example.
Say Laura, 79 and in good health, is trying to decide between a WesleyLife Community for Healthy Living and a new co-op down the street. Both offer independent living, but if Laura should experience a change in her health condition, her options at each residence would be differ dramatically.
"If Laura were living in a co-op and found she needed some extra assistance to live the way she wanted to, she'd have to move to another property, and there might not be availability right away," Ward Phillips, Director of Sales for WesleyLife, said.
"At a WesleyLife community, she'd immediately relocate maybe several hundred feet to an assisted living apartment on campus. She'd continue to see her friends, enjoy the same amenities, and have the same dining experiences. The degree of upheaval in her life would be minor — and she'd receive the help she needs to live as independently as she can."
The process for Laura would be similar if, years later, she were to develop dementia and need extra assistance, or be diagnosed with an illness that would necessitate long-term nursing care.
"She'd stay right there on campus, with the friends and caregivers she knows and cares for," Phillips said. "We're glad we can offer that sense of security and peace of mind."
As you're searching for the community that feels right to you, remember that all senior living is not created equal! Selecting a community that offers levels of living can form a solid foundation on which a lifestyle of desired services and amenities can be built.