President’s Point – July 2019
Elder Care Services (ECS) is a strong advocate for aging in place. For the elderly, aging in place is more comfortable and affords a greater connection to familiar social networks. Aging in place allows for greater self-determination and may slow the advancement of memory loss. Most importantly, aging in place costs less than assisted living or full-time care and clearly improves ones quality of life.
Elder Care Services has a long history of providing affordable in-home services that enable aging in place. For each individual, our services begin with a care plan created by an experienced case manager in conjunction with the wants and needs of the client and his or her family. As a result, we identify what is necessary in terms of personal care, homemaking, respite, and companionship. An average ECS client receives approximately 215 hours of in-home care a year at a cost of $5,000 and many of those costs are subsidized. According to the 2018 Genworth Cost of Care survey for the Tallahassee Metro area, the average annual assisted living facility cost is $52,068 and the average nursing home cost is $93,804. Because of these savings, clients can afford medication, housing, and other vital personal living expenses while still being able to live in their most comfortable surroundings.
Beyond cost considerations, there is a shortage of nursing home beds in Leon County and in the entire State of Florida. We are simply unequipped to accommodate the growing number of seniors who need assistance with the activities of daily living. On ECS’s waiting list there are more than three times as many seniors identified as at risk of imminent nursing home placement as there are available beds. Therefore, Elder Care Services will continue to serve them at home in order to keep them in a safe and familiar environment.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention promotes aging in place, viewing it as "the ability to live in one's own home and community safely, independently and comfortably, regardless of age, income or ability level." And we strive to make this a reality for our clients every single day.
Mark D. Baldino
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