two senior couples ordering lunch outside

What is Life Care?

The dream of an ideal retirement is closer than you could imagine thanks to Life Care. You may be asking, “What is Life Care?” In short, it’s complete peace of mind for seniors and their loved ones. One of the worries many people have about aging is what happens if they get sick. Will they have to move if their health care needs change? Will they be able to afford the necessary health services? Life Care answers those questions by providing access to an incredible lifestyle in communities with amazing services and amenities, spacious residences, restaurant-quality dining, fun activities, and some of the most interesting people you will ever meet. 

What are Life Care communities?

In addition to Life Care communities, you may have also heard the terms Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs) and Life Plan Communities. Most of these communities offer a full continuum of health care services, usually all available on-site. Residents typically pay an entrance fee to join at the independent living level, along with monthly service fees. As health needs change over time, residents can move into the different levels of living (assisted living, skilled nursing and rehab, memory care) without needing to move to a completely new community and without a large increase in monthly costs. They can stay in the place where they’re comfortable and where the faces and spaces are already familiar.

The financial benefits of a CCRC are what truly set it apart from other retirement living options. Depending on the community, residents and their loved ones will select one of three different contract types:

TYPE C

The Fee-for-Service contract, this usually includes the lowest monthly fees and sometimes the lowest entrance fee when compared to other options. Those with Type C contracts still enjoy the same amenities and services as others in the community. However, if health care needs change and they’re required to move to a different level of care, their monthly fees will increase accordingly. The lower entrance fee makes this option extremely attractive, but costs can quickly accumulate in the long run.

TYPE B

The Modified contract, this option also offers lower monthly fees and may also feature a lower entrance fee than one with Life Care. Nearly all the same services and amenities available to residents. The difference comes when assisted living or skilled nursing care is required. Then, residents or their loved ones will be responsible for a portion of the cost and be granted access to a predetermined number of days in the health care center at either a discounted rate or at no cost at all.

TYPE A

The Life Care contract, while initially more expensive than Types B or C, this option provides unparalleled value over time. Residents select this contract type while still fully independent and ready to enjoy the perks of retirement living. Although the entrance and monthly fees are higher, the peace of mind it delivers is priceless. With this agreement, almost all amenities, services and health-related costs, even assisted living or skilled nursing care if needed, are provided with little to no increase in monthly fees, beyond the standard adjustments for inflation. Type A Life Care contracts are a way to pre-pay a portion of health care services that could become necessary in the future. This allows residents and loved ones to enjoy complete comfort, security and more predictable long-term expenses, no matter how their health may change.

When it comes to peace of mind, predictability and comfort, it’s hard to beat a Type A contract at a Life Care center and the assurance it can provide you and your loved ones. The worries of scrambling to find a trustworthy care provider in a convenient location are gone. The hunt for a doctor you’ll all be comfortable with is over. Heartaches and headaches that could have come from wondering about financial what-ifs are no longer on your mind or on the shoulders of family and friends. Instead, you all get to enjoy the choice of living in a community where care is covered while you’re still independent and thriving.

As you get further along in the decision making process about retirement, ask yourself these three questions:

  1. Would you like living in a community with amenities and services that meet your independent lifestyle today, but could accommodate any health changes that could occur tomorrow?
  2. Would you like to take the future burden of caregiving away from your family and friends, and place it in the hands of an experienced and caring team of professionals?
  3. Do you currently enjoy a fully independent lifestyle, but your spouse or partner requires more assistance?

Life care communities are the one retirement living option that successfully answers all three questions by offering long-term solutions for those in search of a community with an array of care options now and into the future.

The benefits of a CCRC simply can’t be overstated. Here are just a few:

  • Abundant amenities and services for comfortable living
    • Personalized living spaces come with next-to-no maintenance like regular home ownership. There’s no more snow to shovel or yard work to do. Some small housekeeping tasks are often included too. Plus, services like scheduled transportation, incredible dining options and 24-hour security make life easy.
  • Focusing on your health and wellbeing
    • Healthy living is a key piece of the CCRC puzzle. Life Care communities offer wellness programs to keep residents’ minds sharp and their bodies active. Most campuses have fitness centers on-site and offer an array of classes specifically for seniors.
  • Peace of mind for loved ones
    • With a minimal increase in cost, friends and family won’t have to worry about the future health needs of aging parents, especially if they’re separated by large distances. Moving to Life Care communities provides loved ones with much needed comfort knowing that all healthcare needs will be met within the community.
  • Full calendars of engaging social activities
    • Life Care centers make wellness and healthy lifestyles a priority. Maintaining relationships with peers help seniors stay connected to all those around them. It’s even been shown to lessen the impact of chronic conditions, improve memory and decrease the risks of cognitive impairment.
  • All levels of care available as needed
    • It’s not uncommon for married couples to require different health needs. If one spouse is thriving in independent living, and the other requires skilled nursing care, a Life Care community is an ideal option because they can still live together in close proximity on the same campus and see each other daily, all while receiving the right level of care. 

If you feel like a Life Care CCRC is the right retirement option for you or your loved one, let our experienced staff at The Glebe explain the benefits of independent living at a community like ours in greater detail. Schedule a visit for everyone involved with this important decision and we’ll be happy to answer everyone’s questions.