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What is Skilled Nursing and How Do I Know If I Need It?

What is Skilled Nursing and How Do I Know If I Need It?

If you have a parent or loved one who needs round-the-clock skilled nursing care — or especially if you’re the primary caregiver for an older loved one — three things are almost certainly true:

  1. It’s a full-time obligation.
  2. At times, you feel it’s physically and mentally overwhelming.
  3. You would need a lot of reassurance before turning the responsibility over to others.

When it comes to finding a skilled nursing facility for your parent or older loved one in Essex, Connecticut, information is your best friend. You’ve come to the right place.

What is skilled nursing?

Skilled nursing care is for those who need short-term rehabilitative care while recovering from a hospital stay, or for those who need long-term care for a condition or disease without the acute care provided in a hospital setting. Sometimes confused with “assisted living,” skilled nursing care includes true medical care services provided by trained and certified nursing professionals. Some conditions that require skilled nursing include:

  • Rehabilitation following surgery or injury
  • Stroke recovery
  • Parkinson’s disease care
  • General wound care
  • Terminal illness care in coordination with hospice
  • Acute medical conditions that don’t require hospitalization

What types of services are provided at a typical skilled nursing facility?

For starters, look for a skilled nursing facility in Essex, Connecticut, that provides all activities of daily living with compassion and respect for each person. These services for seniors should include as much assistance as necessary with meal preparation and dining, dressing, bathing and hygiene, perambulation, toileting and medication management for seniors.

Short-term skilled nursing care
As mentioned above, entering a skilled nursing facility often occurs following a planned or unexpected hospital stay. The best skilled nursing facilities will offer the following services:

  • Physical, occupational and speech therapies
  • Post-operative wound care
  • IV care

Following hospital discharge, your loved one’s physician will have prescribed specific therapies and care. This will help you ask if the particular type of service is available, then decide whether you’re comfortable with a facility’s capability to provide it.

Long-term skilled nursing care
Most skilled nursing facilities are equipped to serve those with chronic conditions that necessitate full-time care. All the therapies and services listed above should be available on a long-term basis, helping your loved one live each day safely and comfortably.

For older adults, this care might be provided in a senior living community’s health center. In addition to quality senior care, this scenario benefits residents by putting them in contact with peers. Also, a high-quality senior living community will offer more social opportunities and appropriately active programming for residents.

Most important of all: How do you evaluate quality

Though it would be nearly impossible for a lay person to personally review every skilled nursing facility in Essex, Connecticut, there’s good news: Medicare.gov provides unbiased online reviews of skilled nursing providers. Every provider is rated in four categories on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. The very best options achieve 5 stars in every category. CMS.org (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) explain the four categories as follows:

  • Overall rating
  • Health Inspections – The health inspection rating contains the 3 most recent health inspections and investigations due to complaints. The most recent survey findings are weighted more than the prior year.
  • Staffing – The staffing rating has information about the number of hours of care provided on average to each resident each day by nursing staff.
  • Quality Measures (QMs) –The quality measure rating has information on 17 different physical and clinical measures for nursing home residents. The QMs offer information about how well nursing homes are caring for their residents’ physical and clinical needs.

Essex Meadows serves at the highest level.

At Essex Meadows, we offer skilled nursing in our on-campus Health Center, which achieves a 5-Star rating, exceeding standards in every category. The beautiful setting in Essex, Connecticut, adds to the therapeutic benefits of the care administered by registered nurses and licensed nurses, who are on-site 24/7.

Short- and long-term skilled nursing is available to the general public with no entrance fee. And each stay is made more convenient because we provide supplemental services and amenities including:

  • Laundry and housekeeping services
  • Fine dining with chef-prepared meals in our dining room or in-room dining
  • Cable TV, phone service and complimentary Wi-Fi

In addition to every skilled nursing service you’d expect from a top-quality provider, Essex Meadows also serves families by providing short-term senior respite care and compassionate hospice care.

If we can serve your family with short- or long-term skilled nursing services, complete the form on this page. We’ll be in touch with you shortly.