Skilled nursing facilities (commonly known as nursing homes) provide residential accommodations as well as medical care for the elderly and those needing care 24 hours a day. Nurses and aides are on duty at all times, and physical, speech and occupational therapy is usually available.
Some nursing homes have special care units for specific needs such as patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Many are set up like hospitals while others have more of a home-like setting. Couples are often housed together, and staff members often build close relationships with the residents. Choosing the right nursing home for you or your loved one can take time and effort and should be discussed with other family members.
For those who qualify, costs may be covered by Medicaid. Eligibility varies by state. Additional information can be found on-line at www.medicare.gov/nursing/overview.asp.
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Begin by entering the zip code for the desired location of a nursing home.