Reviewing Senior Care Options

By Katie Gilbert

When an aging loved one needs professional care, it can be a daunting task to evaluate your options. There are many different types of care available depending on your loved one’s needs and wishes. Senior care falls on a spectrum ranging from minimal assistance to round-the-clock medical attention. And this care can take place at home or in a facility. Let’s explore the different types of care available to help you determine the best fit for your loved one. 

Senior Care Options 

Facility-Based Care 

Some types of senior care require a senior to move into a residential facility to receive care. These facilities house other seniors with similar needs, meaning that a senior may not receive much personalized, one-on-one attention from staff.  

Board and Care Homes 

Supervision: Minimal  

Medical Care: No 

Cost: $3,500 to $4,500 per month 

Board and care homes are residential neighborhoods with homes designed for seniors who can still live independently. Usually, these communities are small, and staff members are available to help seniors with their daily routines. However, they do not provide medical care.  

Seniors may have a private home or room, or they could share a room with another senior to cut down on costs. Board and care homes allow seniors to live independently while ensuring that assistance is nearby. 

Assisted Living 

Supervision: 24/7  

Medical Care: Some 

Cost: $2,000 to $7,000 per month 

Assisted living facilities are designed to support seniors who can care for themselves most of the time but need help with activities of daily living, like grooming, medication, bathing, or using the bathroom. However, these facilities cannot provide intensive medical care. 

Seniors may have a private room or shared room within the facility. And many facilities plan activities to keep seniors entertained and socially engaged. Some assisted living communities provide additional amenities and services, like a spa, gym, or landscaped gardens and walking paths.  

Nursing Home 

Supervision: 24/7 

Medical Care: Yes 

Cost: $7,700 to $8,800 per month 

Nursing homes are residential facilities designed to care for seniors who can no longer remain independent. They offer 24/7 assistance and provide help with activities of daily living. They also provide some medical support and rehabilitation services. Care is mostly provided by nurses and nurse aides, hence the name “nursing home.”  

Like assisted living facilities, nursing homes can have private or shared rooms and may offer a range of amenities. 

Skilled Nursing Facility 

Supervision: 24/7 

Medical Care: Yes 

Cost: $7,600 to $8,700 per month 

Skilled nursing facilities are designed for seniors who require intensive medical care, similar to the level of treatment that you would get in the hospital. Skilled nursing facilities offer a wider range and depth of services than a nursing home, like physical, occupational, or speech therapy, for example.  

Seniors may go to a skilled nursing facility after a stay in the hospital or if they have a serious terminal illness. The goal of a skilled nursing facility is to help seniors get healthy enough to return home. 

Hospice Facility 

Supervision: 24/7 

Medical Care: Yes 

Cost: $500 to $1,000 per day 

Hospice facilities provide inpatient care for seniors at the end of their life. Their services focus on alleviating pain and addressing the emotional and spiritual needs of a senior. A hospice facility may also provide grief programs and support to families of seniors.  

Home-Based Care 

Other types of senior care are delivered in a senior’s home, so they can maintain their regular routine and be in familiar surroundings. This type of care allows for one-on-one, personalized attention.  

Home Care 

Supervision: Up to 24/7 

Medical Care: No 

Cost: $24 per hour 

Home care is non-medical care that supports seniors in their daily routines and activities. It can include assistance with activities of daily living, transportation, meal preparation, cleaning, and more. Home care can benefit seniors who need minimal assistance and those who need round-the-clock aid. 

This type of care is very personalized and tailored to a senior’s specific needs and preferences. Maybe a senior likes their hair done a certain way or needs to go to the grocery store every Friday. Caregivers can support seniors and help them maintain their quality of life at home. 

Home Health Care  

Supervision: Up to 24/7 

Medical Care: Yes 

Cost: $24 per hour 

Home health care or skilled medical care is provided by a licensed healthcare professional. It can include physical therapy, administration of medications, wound care, and monitoring of health status. It’s important to note that home health care does not include unskilled services, like the ones provided by home care. 

While home health care can be provided up to 24/7, it is typically most cost effective for seniors who require minimal medical assistance because insurance will only cover a specific period of time each week. Seniors who require more intensive care may benefit more from a skilled nursing facility. 


Supervision: Up to 24/7 

Medical Care: Yes 

Cost: $150 to $1,400 per day 

Hospice can also be provided in the home or other residential facility (like assisted living home). The cost of hospice may depend on the level of care that a senior needs. For example, some seniors may need round-the-clock medical attention. Hospice services can also range from a few days to a few months, depending on a senior’s condition.  

Choosing the Best Option  

Now that we’ve reviewed senior care options, we’d like to provide you with some questions to consider when deciding the best option for your loved one.  

  • What does my loved one want? 
  • What level of care does my loved one need? 
  • Where will my loved one be most comfortable? 
  • Which senior care options can my loved one afford? 

As you consider your senior care options, you can also call or visit different senior care companies in your area to get a better idea of the service they can provide to your loved one. Ultimately, it is up to you and your loved one to decide together the best options for senior care.  

For more information about professional home care, reach out to a Caring team near you 

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