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What are the Top Benefits of Skilled Nursing?

Whatarethetopbenefitsof Skilled Nursing

Key Summary

Skilled Nursing Facilities (SNF) offer the assistance you need after leaving the hospital, to help you get ready to move back home. Learn more.

Think of the Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) as the bridge between your hospital stay and your return home. Whether you or a loved one is recovering from surgery, in need of physical or occupational therapy, bouncing back from an injury, or are otherwise in need of relatively short-term but personalized medical care, a SNF is likely to be the next step towards recovery.

What exactly are the primary benefits of Skilled Nursing? Let’s take a look at the top advantages provided by Skilled Nursing Facilities and talk a little bit about how it works financially.

What is a Skilled Nursing Facility?

If you’re interested in the top benefits of SNFs, you probably already have some kind of understanding of what these communities are all about. To reiterate: a Skilled Nursing Facility provides the highest level of care, but over a relatively brief, defined period, usually not more than 100 days and often capped at 30 days. A Skilled Nursing Facility is an in-patient treatment and rehabilitation center staffed by licensed nurses and other medical professionals.

The Top 7 Benefits of Skilled Nursing

What can you expect from a Skilled Nursing Facility? SNFs provide dozens of different types of services, many of which are complex and can make a significant impact on one’s recovery. Here are seven of the top benefits you or your loved one will receive with a SNF:

Lowered Risk of Returning to the Hospital

The main goal of a Skilled Nursing Facility stay is to facilitate your return home. However, when seniors in particular are hospitalized for an illness, a stroke, or surgery, there’s always the risk of having to return to the hospital. With Skilled Nursing care, the top priority is to help the patient avoid returning to the hospital by helping them regain a sufficient level of independence.

Because SNFs offer 24/7 attention, licensed professionals can immediately tend to any complications that might arise and thus help you avoid a potential return to the hospital. In a SNF, you’re receiving a high level of medical care without an extended hospital stay, and the goal is for that medical care to get you to the point where you’re ready to go home.

Specialized Rehab Therapy

Many Skilled Nursing Facilities offer specialized rehabilitation care, including:

  • Physical therapy, which helps with pain management and increased strength and mobility.
  • Occupational therapy, which concentrates on helping seniors in their completion of daily activities and to regain more independence.
  • Speech therapy, to assist the patient in improving speech-related problems and disorders that sometimes stem from a stroke, a brain injury, and many other types of injuries.

Activities of Daily Living (ADLs)

Skilled Nursing Facilities provide help with the fundamental activities of daily living, including:

  • Dressing: Physically helping patients get dressed and undressed and helping them make the right wardrobe decisions for the day ahead of them, e.g., warmer clothing and layers if they’re going to be outside for a period of time.
  • Personal hygiene: Bathing, grooming, nail care, oral health care.
  • Mobility: Assistance with getting around the facility. Walking, climbing stairs, getting in and out of bed.
  • Continence: Help with using the restroom.
  • Eating: Physical assistance with eating or drinking as required.

Social Engagement

The road to recovery should not be traveled alone. When a patient has a debilitating illness or injury, it’s an intrinsically isolating experience, and that feeling of isolation can present unique challenges.

At a Skilled Nursing Facility, one is actively involved in social interaction with staff, including nurses and other medical professionals, and those daily interactions work against feelings of isolation. Equally important are group social interactions, which vary from community to community but often include:

  • Group workouts
  • Musical activities
  • Art therapy
  • Cooking
  • Book clubs
  • Gardening
  • Using technology

Dietary Assistance

Diet plays a huge role in helping you or a loved one restore strength, health and wellness. Skilled Nursing Facilities provide dietary assistance on a number of levels, including:

  • Preparing three meals a day for patients.
  • Creating a dining plan that offers variety but also accommodates any dietary restrictions.
  • Providing specialized or therapeutic diets when necessary.
  • Enlisting the help of doctors and nutritionists to structure diets to meet the individual needs of residents.
  • Assisting residents who have difficulty chewing or swallowing.

Personalized Care

Skilled Nursing Facilities aren’t just buildings. They’re communities where Registered Nurses (RNs), Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs), Medical Directors, Speech and Language Pathologists, Audiologists, and more, not only provide medical care, but build relationships with patients. The SNF experience includes daily assessments and skilled, personalized care from day one.

Cost & Coverage

Cost is always going to be paramount when one is exploring the top benefits of Skilled Nursing Facilities. There’s a lot of good news on this front.

You may have wondered, “does Medicare pay for a Skilled Nursing Facility?” Medicare normally covers your stay, but there are conditions and requirements to follow. After 21 days, a daily co-insurance payment is required. Also, you must have had a recent qualified hospital stay, and a recommendation from your doctor indicating you are required to receive Skilled Nursing services to assist you in your recovery. Additionally, it’s important to make sure the facility you’re considering is certified with Medicare nursing home coverage.

To learn more about financial expectations and requirements, discover additional information in our article “What Does Skilled Nursing or a Nursing Home Cost?

Find a Skilled Nursing Facility in Your Area

Now that you’re considering a Skilled Nursing Facility and you’ve learned about some of the top benefits, you’re ready to discover SNFs in your area. Use the search tool to find the right community for you or your loved one.

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