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Long-Term Care Home    |    Steps to Choosing Long-Term Care    |    Types of Long-Term Care    |    Paying For Long-Term Care

Steps to Choosing Long-Term Care

  Steps to Choosing Long-Term Care Resources  
  Overview | Selected Section Step 1: Think | Step 2: Learn | Step 3: Find out about choices 
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There are many different kinds of long-term care. Long-term care can take place at home, in senior centers, at community centers, in assisted living or special retirement communities, as well as in nursing homes. Long-term care service is not only nursing home care.

IMPORTANT: Medicare does not pay for most long-term care. Medicare pays only for medically necessary skilled nursing facility or home health care. You must meet certain conditions for Medicare to pay for these types of care when you get out of the hospital. Most long-term care is to assist people with support services such as dressing, bathing, and using the bathroom. Medicare doesn’t pay for this type of care, which is often called “custodial care.” Custodial care is care that helps you with activities of daily living. It may also include care that most people do for themselves.

The chart below lists some of the many kinds of custodial care people often need, like help with activities of daily living or care most people do themselves. Think about whether you need these services now, or if you may need them in the future. Check off the services you think you may need.

You may need help with only one or two types of activities of daily living, like help with eating or bathing. Or, you may need help with many activities of daily living or help with care needs, like diabetes monitoring or help with oxygen if you have breathing problems. Also, your needs may change over time. It is important to make a list of the kinds of services you need and revise this list as your needs change.

Will I need help with the following activities of daily living?
Using the bathroom, including caring for a catheter or colostomy bag if needed.
Moving into or out of a bed, chair, or wheelchair.
Will I need help with these additional services?
Preparing meals
Housework and laundry
Getting to appointments
Paying bills and other money matters
Home maintenance and repairs
Using the telephone
Will I need help with the following care?
Remembering to take medicines
Diabetes monitoring
Using eye drops
Getting oxygen
Taking care of colostomy or bladder catheters

For additional information, please look at the Summary of Long-Term Care Choices information.

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