How can you determine if someone needs long-term care?


Quick Answer

Age, gender, disability, health status and living arrangements are all factors in deciding if a person needs long-term care, according to the Administration of Community Living. Long-term care covers a wide range of services, most of which are associated with daily living, as opposed to medical care. Long-term care may involve activities of daily living, such as bathing, movement or eating, or assistance with everyday tasks, such as grocery shopping, housework or managing money.

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Full Answer

An older person is more likely to need long-term care, notes the Administration of Community Living. However, a person of any age whose life could be improved with assistance should be considered for long-term care. Because women, on average, outlive men by about five years, women are more likely to need long-term care in their later years. Disabilities, especially those caused by illness or accident that prevent a person from carrying out daily tasks, can also help determine if a person needs long-term care. Additionally, living arrangements impact whether a person needs long-term care because someone who lives alone is more likely to need assistance than someone who lives with friends or relatives.

There are alternative options to long-term care such as occupational therapy to enhance self-care skills; home modification to increase ease of mobility; and emergency alert systems such as Life-Alert to increase identification of and response time to emergencies, explains the California Department of Health Care Services.

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