A new report card has seated Indiana dead last, indicating that the Hoosier
state lacks community-based long-term care services. Indiana had ranked
47th in the last two scorecards, done in 2014 and 2011. This most recent
Long-Term Services & Supports State Scorecard, was conducted by AARP, the Commonwealth Fund and the Scan Foundation.
Indiana was ranked collectively 51st among the 50 states and the District
of Columbia and also in these categories:
The state also scored poorly in:
The very best option for you in
protecting your loved one is to do the leg work up front and put in the time and the proper research
about the care facility options in your area. Making sure they are placed
in the most appropriate location for their needs should be of utmost importance
as well. There are many types of long-term care facilities in Indiana
Assisted living communities specialize in providing care and supervision.
They frequently offer services like planned activities, housekeeping and
laundry, transportation, meals, exercise and wellness programs. Assisted
living communities sometimes offer limited medical assistance, but not
These types of communities may look like a small college campus or even
a suburban block community. They typically offer a variety of housing
options that can support many different life stages. Spanning independent
living, assisted living, or skilled nursing care, they enable residents
to age in a single community without having to relocate as their needs evolve.
Sometimes referred to as retirement communities, independent living communities
offer older adults with limited care needs a simplified lifestyle. They
often take the form of apartment complexes with amenities like fitness
programs, housekeeping, communal meals and other services to enrich and
simplify life for older adults looking to downsize.
Home health agencies would provide medical care in the home. Doctors prescribe
home healthcare when someone needs help recovering from surgery, an accident,
or a serious illness. Home healthcare is an option when your loved one
is not ill enough to be in a hospital but is not yet well enough to be
home alone. Home healthcare agencies are licensed by the state and must
also adhere to federal regulations.
In-home care is a service that provides caregivers who will come into the
home to assist with activities of daily living, including light housekeeping,
grocery shopping, meal preparation, and grooming. Some provide additional
services related to help with personal care for toileting and bathing.
Caregivers can come as many times as you would like, but they generally
do not provide medical care. Caregivers who provide these services are
also referred to as personal care assistants.
Memory care communities specialize in providing care to aging adults with
Alzheimer’s, dementia, and other cognitive issues. Staff members
are trained to help with communication and to help residents manage dementia
symptoms like sundown syndrome, wandering, and combativeness.
Nursing homes, also called skilled nursing facilities, provide care to
those with illnesses or mental conditions requiring full-time monitoring
and medical care. Most skilled nursing residents live in semi-private
rooms, and meals are generally provided.
It is always best for a care facility or nursing home to be located where
family and friends can visit often. Statistically speaking, people in
nursing homes who have regular visitors usually receive better care. No
matter how rushed you may feel, don’t pick the first place especially
if you have a bad feeling. Do your research and plan visits at more than
one place. And, if possible, visit with your parent and other family members
so you can make comparisons and everyone can share their thoughts. Before
your visit, look at the
online survey history of the nursing home to see what areas may be problematic and contact
Indiana’s Area Agencies on Aging (AAA) to find out more about the residence.
In addition, AARP says when touring a nursing home or long-term care facility,
Don’t forget to be open and straight forward in asking the staff
what they are doing to improve the quality of care for residents in the
care facility or nursing home. Bring
this report to their attention even! Talk to nursing staff to make sure the kind of
care your loved one needs is provided. Ask about things such as:
Although there is a new Indiana law on the books,
House Bill 1493, that directs the state’s Division of Aging to develop a plan to
expand the state’s services for seniors and people with disabilities,
critics believe the $2 billion budget reserve will not provide adequate
resources for long-term care and public health.
It may be extremely difficult to think of your elderly or disabled loved
ones not being properly cared for, but it does happen. And in the worst
cases it can result in death. If a loved one is showing signs of neglect,
complains about the care being received in a long-term care facility or
nursing home, appears altered in emotional or physical ways, or if you fear they have
been neglected, mistreated, physically, sexually, or financially abused,
Wagner Reese can fight for justice in your situation. None of us wants to see our loved
ones suffer, but you can help protect others from the same fate in the
future. Call our offices today at (888) 204-8440 to schedule a risk-free
Sources: AARP, Commonwealth Fund and the Scan Foundation