Choosing a nursing home or long-term care facility | Nursing homes and other care options (2023)

Use the following questions as a guide when choosing a care home or other long-term care facility for yourself or a loved one. It's also a good idea to ask the home for a copy of the last inspection and whether a voluntary ombudsman visits regularly. The Ombudsman stands up for neighbors and other residents. And remember, if you have a complaint about your home or you suspect an elderly or disabled resident who is being abused or neglected, call the Adult Abuse and Neglect Helpline, 1-800-392-0210.

Do all facilities offer the same services and care?
What questions should I ask to choose the right facility?
What to look for when signing a long-term care contract?
What happens if I run out of money?
What are the costs of care in the facility?
Do all facilities accept Medicare and/or Medicaid reimbursement for care?
What rights do I have as a resident of a long-term care facility?

Do all facilities offer the same services and care?

No, there are different levels of care. Long-term care facilities in Missouri offer varying levels of care based on individual needs. ClickHereto see different levels of care.

What questions should I ask to choose the right facility?

  • Can the facility meet my or my loved ones' needs?
  • Does it have a current state license?
  • Does he accept Medicare and/or Medicaid?
  • What problems were found during the last inspection or inspection? (A copy of the last home inspection should be posted or available in the home.)
  • Are residents treated with dignity?
  • Is the house clean and free of odors?
  • Is there an ombudsman who visits regularly?
  • Talk to locals and family members. What comments do they have?

Try to visit many homes or facilities, many times and at different times, if possible. You can see the staff interact with the locals during meals and in the afternoon and evening.

For a more complete checklist, please contact your local representativeArea Aging Officeor the Missouri Long Term Care Advocate Program at 1-800-309-3282.

(Video) How to Choose a Long-Term Care Facility

What to look for when signing a long-term care contract?

Residents have rights under both state and federal law (these rights are listed at the end of these questions). The adoption contract is also very important for establishing the rights and obligations of the resident.

Read the admission agreement carefully and ask questions if you don't understand something. The contract must specify the items and services that are included in the daily rate and the items and services that are not.

You should also specify how the facility handles emergencies and when a resident can be moved.

Each facility also has a 'bed retention policy' which outlines how residents can secure their bed or any bed in the facility if they need to go to the hospital.

The contract should not require family members to be responsible for their loved ones' bills if their loved ones receive Medicaid.

What happens if I run out of money?

Many people end up in a qualified nurse or intermediate care facility as private paying residents and turn to Medicaid when they run out of money. If the home is Medicaid certified, it must continue to care for the resident who will eventually need Medicaid if a Medicaid bed is available. Ask for a Medicaid-certified bed upon admission to ensure continued coverage. If there is a suspicion of a mental illness, mental retardation or related disorder, a special screening process may be required.

Bedridden Medicaid allows you to take advantage of the "asset sharing" program. The program helps ensure that the spouses of community residents are not impoverished because of their loved one's bills. A person can apply for Medicaid at their local Family Services Department office.


In some cases, residents are eligible for a financial contribution towards the cost of their care. The scholarship, funded by Missouri tax dollars, is available to eligible low-income individuals by applying at their local Department of Family Services office.

What are the costs of care in the facility?

Nationwide, the cost of a qualified nursing home is approximately $64,000 per year. The average cost in a nursing home is about $24,000. When choosing a property, find out which services are included in the daily base price and which are not. Ask if a deposit is required and the deposit refund procedure. (Medicaid residents do not have to pay a deposit.)

Do all facilities accept Medicare and/or Medicaid reimbursement for care?

Many skilled and intermediate care facilities accept Medicare and/or Medicaid reimbursements, but residential care facilities do not. On the other hand, residents of a nursing home may be entitled to public aid in the form of subsidies for nursing care. In addition, residential care centers may participate in the Medicaid Personal Care Program. The personal care program provides Medicaid-eligible residents with assistance with daily activities. This program offers nursing home residents an alternative to home care.

What rights do I have as a resident of a long-term care facility?

Missouri residents living in state-licensed long-term care facilities are guaranteed certain rights under the Missouri Omnibus Nursing Home Act of 1979 and the federal Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1987. These rights are as follows:

  • You will be informed about your rights and obligations as a resident orally and in writing (upon admission to the facility and periodically during your stay).
  • You will be informed of available services and related costs, including protection of personal funds if held by the facility, and any services not covered by the facility's daily rate.
  • Goods or services that are not included in the price of the property can be purchased or rented from the selected supplier.
  • You will be notified before any changes to your room or roommates are made.
  • You can view the results of facility inspections, including improvement plans.
  • You have the right to services that are reasonably tailored to your individual needs and preferences, except where your health and safety or that of other residents would be at risk.
  • You have the right not to have your life regulated beyond what is necessary to provide housing services.
  • You have the right to keep your personal effects if space permits.
  • You have the right to be informed about all aspects of your care, to choose your personal doctor, to be involved in the planning of your care and treatment, including any changes to your care and treatment. You have the right to refuse treatment and be informed of the consequences of such refusal.
  • You will be encouraged and supported to exercise your rights during your stay. You have the right to raise complaints and propose changes regarding personal hygiene, the behavior of other residents, the conditions of the facility or other unmet needs or expectations, and you can expect prompt action to resolve the complaint.
  • You have the right to privacy when visiting with your spouse and can share a room with your spouse if you are both residents and you both agree to live together.
  • You have the right to privacy and respect in relation to housing, personal care, treatment, written and telephone communications and visits by others.
  • All information related to your medical, personal, social or financial matters will be kept confidential.
  • You can only be dismissed or transferred for health reasons, for your own sake or for the sake of others, or for non-payment. Pre-transfer and pre-discharge notices must be given at least 30 days in advance. Written notices should be sent to the resident, family member or legal representative, or the long-term care ombudsman in the absence of a family, with the reasons for the claim, the right to appeal, and how to contact the state long-term care ombudsman. be confirmed. The property should help arrange alternative accommodation.
  • You have the right to participate in resident councils and your family has the right to assemble in the facility with the families of other residents.
  • You can interact and communicate privately with people of your choice. You may have free access to an ombudsman, your individual doctor, or a state or federal government representative.
  • You are entitled to appropriate activities and may participate in social, religious and social activities of your choice.
  • You have the right to be free from physical or mental abuse, corporal punishment, forced solitude and any physical or chemical restraints imposed for disciplinary purposes or for the convenience of staff. Restrictions should only be used under the guidance of a physician and only to treat medical symptoms.

Care for the elderly and disabled

Area Aging Agencies Adult daycare Missouri State Alzheimer's Plan Task Force Caregivers in Missouri Four senior centers Members of the Club of the Century Caregiver dementia Financial planning Domestic and social services Information about home and local service providers

Master plan aging Medicare/Medicaid Patient and Provider Medicare Improvement Act (MIPPA) Missouri Seniors Hotline Missouri People Stop Financial Exploitation of Adults (MOSAFE) Nursing homes and other care A month for older Americans - May Ombudsman Program

Sources Senior Day at the Missouri State Fair Higher employment

Toon me Falls Free Missouri A gray-haired parliamentarian World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD)

(Video) Assisted Living vs Nursing Homes | Understand the difference

related links

(Video) Different Types Of Long Term Care Facilities | Matching Facility Services With Seniors Need


Section of the Long-Term Care Regulations
Regulatory and Licensing Department
Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services
post office box 570
Jefferson City, MO 65102-0570

Phone: 573-526-8524
Fax: 573-751-8493

Long Term Care Regions


Choosing a nursing home or long-term care facility | Nursing homes and other care options? ›

Nursing care facilities provide different sets of services compared to residential care. Nursing homes are typically for the elderly who need round-the-clock supervision, which residential care facilities offer assistance to elderly who need help with daily living, such as bathing, eating, and more.

What is the difference between a care facility and a nursing home? ›

Nursing care facilities provide different sets of services compared to residential care. Nursing homes are typically for the elderly who need round-the-clock supervision, which residential care facilities offer assistance to elderly who need help with daily living, such as bathing, eating, and more.

What are the four types of care that may be provided in a long-term care facility? ›

It can include skilled nursing care, speech, physical or occupational therapy or home health aide services.

What is the most common type of care needed for long-term care? ›

The most common type of long-term care is personal care—help with everyday activities, also called "activities of daily living." These activities include bathing, dressing, grooming, using the toilet, eating, and moving around—for example, getting out of bed and into a chair.

What is the main goal of a skilled care facility a type of long-term care facility? ›

Purpose of Long Term Care Facilities

The purpose of long-term care is to provide caregiver assistance 24/7 for patients. Long Term Care Facilities are well-suited for patients with neurological conditions, cognitive disorders, and chronic conditions limiting mobility.

How much do most nursing homes cost a month? ›

The cost of nursing home facilities is generally higher than that of an assisted living facility. The average cost of a nursing home in the United States is around $7,000 to $8,000 per month, while the average cost of assisted living communities is around $4,000 to $5,000 per month.

What is an example of a skilled nursing facility? ›

Examples of skilled nursing facility care include intravenous injections and physical therapy. The need for custodial care (for example, assistance with activities of daily living, like bathing and dressing) cannot, in itself, qualify you for Medicare coverage in a skilled nursing facility.

Which 3 levels of care are long-term care policies provided with? ›

Some long–term care takes place in nursing homes that provide custodial care primarily, but many can provide skilled care, intermediate care, and custodial care.

What type of patients would use a long-term care facility? ›

Long term care facilities provide a variety of services, both medical and personal care, to people who are unable to live independently.

What type of care is typically not covered in a long-term care policy? ›

Long-term care insurance typically doesn't cover care provided by family members. It also usually doesn't cover medical care costs⁠—those are typically covered by private health insurance and/or Medicare.

What is a major cause of the need for long-term care? ›

Senility, Dementia, and Alzheimer's disease have become leading causes of the need for long-term care.

What is the most expensive type of long-term care? ›

Another reason people don't stay long: SNFs tend to be the most expensive type of long-term care facility. This is, of course, because of the skilled medical services and breadth of care involved.

Which type of long-term care setting is typically the most expensive? ›

Nursing homes are often the most expensive option for long-term care, but they provide many medical and social support that many of us need in our old age.

What are the three major components of long-term care? ›

The long-term care delivery system has three major components: The informal system. The community-based system. The institutional system.

What is the minimum benefit that must be offered by a long-term care facility? ›

If you decide to buy a long-term care insurance policy, you will select a maximum daily benefit. It is important to note that the minimum home care daily benefit you can select in California is $50 a day. There is no minimum daily benefit for facility care.

What are two goals of long-term care? ›

The goals of long-term care are much more difficult to measure than the goals of acute care. While the primary goal of acute care is to return an individual to a previous functioning level, long-term care aims to prevent deterioration and promote social adjustment to stages of decline.

Who most often pays the cost of people living in nursing homes? ›

The most common source of assistance is Medicaid, which offers several state-based programs to people who are eligible based on income or disability. These programs include home and community-based services, adult foster care, and Medicaid personal care services. Contact your state Medicaid agency to learn more.

What are two characteristics of a skilled nursing facility? ›

7 Key Traits of a Strong Skilled Nursing Program
  • The community is clean, secure and well maintained. ...
  • Residents are treated with respect and dignity. ...
  • Residents have a sense of purpose in their day-to-day. ...
  • The staff is happy. ...
  • Meals are nutritious and tasty. ...
  • Medical services are provided onsite.

What does SNF stand for? ›

SKILLED NURSING FACILITY (SNF) DEFINED. An SNF is an institution or a distinct part of an institution (see §201.1), such as a skilled nursing.

What does ICF stand for in long term care? ›

Intermediate Care Facilities for individuals with Intellectual disability (ICF/ID) is an optional Medicaid benefit that enables states to provide comprehensive and individualized health care and rehabilitation services to individuals to promote their functional status and independence.

What is the biggest drawback of long-term care insurance? ›

Long-term care insurance has the significant drawback of increasing premiums over time, which may become unaffordable for some seniors. Additionally, traditional LTCI does not offer a return of premium, meaning if you never require long-term care, the money you paid into the policy is lost.

What is the best candidate for a long-term care policy? ›

If you're in-between, you might be a good candidate for long-term care insurance if you're in good health, can afford the costs (including possible premium increases), don't want to use most or all of your assets and income to pay for long-term care, and don't want to burden family or friends.

What Medicare Part B does not cover? ›

Generally, most vision, dental and hearing services are not covered by Medicare Parts A and B. Other services not covered by Medicare Parts A and B include: Routine foot care. Cosmetic surgery.

What is the average age of all assisted living residents? ›

Slightly more than half of all residents nationwide are 85 or older—roughly a third fall between the ages of 74 and 85. One in every ten residents is 65- to 74 years old. Just a few residents are 64 or younger. The average age of seniors in facilities that provide living assistance is 87.

What happens if elderly person has no one to care for them? ›

When an elderly person has no one to take care of them, they may opt to take care of themselves and continue living in their own home. Programs for seniors without family are available, as are nursing homes and assisted living.

What is an alternate plan of care? ›

An alternative plan of care is a broad term used to describe other services not listed in the policy. You or your loved one could have your policy for 10 to 20 years or more, and the policy itself can't account for every need.

What will long-term care policies usually pay for? ›

Long-term care insurance policies reimburse policyholders a daily amount (up to a pre-selected limit) for services to assist them with activities of daily living such as bathing, dressing, or eating. You can select a range of care options and benefits that allow you to get the services you need, where you need them.

Which insurance does not cover most long-term care costs? ›

Keep in mind that Medicaid and private insurance often do not cover the costs of long-term care or any of the LTC-related costs, making a specific LTC insurance policy a good idea if you think you may need coverage.

What will long-term care insurance generally cover? ›

Long-term care insurance usually covers all or part of assisted living facilities and in-home care for people 65 or older or with a chronic condition that needs constant care. It is private insurance available to anyone who can afford to pay for it.

What is the difference between care home and home care? ›

A care home is a residential home which provides accommodation and care for elderly people. Care home staff can help residents with tasks like washing, dressing, taking medicines, and going to the toilet. Home care, on the other hand, is where you receive support from a carer in your own home.

What is another name for 24 hour skilled care? ›

Nursing Home or Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF): A residential care setting that provides 24-hour care to individuals who are chronically ill or disabled.

How much does a nursing home cost in Ohio? ›

The cost of nursing homes in Ohio is nearly 70% greater than that of assisted living facilities. The average cost for a semi-private room is $7,300 per month, and a private room is $8,213 per month.

What is the difference between care and caregiving? ›

Caretaking refers to the responsibilities involved in looking after the safety, health, comfort, and well-being of another person. While caretaking is typically a paid profession, caregiving is often unpaid and refers to caring for others from a place of love and lifelong commitment.

Which patients most frequently require home health services? ›

What Does Home Health Care Do for Patients?
  • Alzheimer's Disease.
  • Chronic kidney disease.
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Diabetes.
  • Heart disease.
  • Recovery from illness or surgery.
  • Chronic conditions or injuries.

What is the difference between caregiver and live in caregiver? ›

When you choose a live-in caregiver, you are choosing to have only two or three people taking care of your loved one. A caregiver will work twenty-four-hour shifts, several days a week. You will need to hire another caregiver or two for the additional days of the week.

What is the fancy word for home health aide? ›

Assistive care providers may have different titles, including personal care aide (PCA), home health aide (HHA), and certified nurse assistant (CNA).

What is a caretaker patient called? ›

Caregiver/Carer and Care Receiver.

What are care takers called? ›

A caregiver refers to someone who directly cares for the elderly, children, or people with serious illnesses. On the other hand, a caretaker's job is broader, such as being employed to take care of the house or land while the owner is away and someone who provides physical or emotional care and support.

What is the average cost of long term care in Ohio? ›

Across Ohio, in 2022, per Genworth's Cost of Care Survey, the average cost of assisted living is $4,635 a month.

How much does home care cost for elderly in Ohio? ›

There are also different ways to pay for home care and strategies to help make it more affordable. According to the 2021 Genworth Cost of Care Survey, the average cost of non-medical in-home care across the USA was $26.00 per hour. In Ohio, in-home care averages $25.95 per hour.


1. How to Pick the Right Assisted Living Residence or Nursing Home for Long Term Care
2. In Home Care vs Assisted Living and Nursing Homes - Mind and Mobility - The Better Alternative
(Mind And Mobility)
3. What is a Nursing Home (SNF, LTC, Acute Rehab, Sub-Acute, Post-Acute, LTAC)?
(Assisted Living Answer Man)
4. 5 Nursing Home Alternatives
(Elder Law Care- Patrick J. Kelleher & Associates)
5. Medicare & You: Nursing Home / Long-Term Care
6. Selecting a long-term care Facility | Check Medicare states Health & Human Services Department


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