Senior Living FAQs with Brenda and Zoe

Brenda Reichenbach and Zoe Keckler are Licensed Social Workers and Admissions Counselors for Mennonite Memorial Home and Hilty Home, respectively.  Recently, we sat down with them to find out what questions are most frequently asked of them – and here’s what they said.

Q:  I’ve heard that MHCO offers “Independent Living”, “Assisted Living”, “Skilled Nursing” and “Home Health Care”.  What does it all mean?

Brenda:  These are different levels of care offered by MHCO.  As the level of care required by an elder increases, additional services are offered.  Independent Living is just what it’s called – in most cases no healthcare services are offered as part of this living arrangement, although in some cases Home Health Care can supplement Independent Living to provide some healthcare services.  There are various arrangements available, but Independent Living can offer things like home maintenance, lawn care, snow removal, covered utilities, and campus programs and activities to name a few.  Assisted Living is the next level of care and is available in our main buildings.  This level of care will treat you to 3 meals a day, laundry and housekeeping, and 24/7 staff assistance when needed.  Some elders may also choose to ask for additional Home Health Care services to stay at this level of care. Skilled Nursing care provides a higher level of care, including services such as therapy/rehabilitation, IV therapy, and wound care to name a few.  In full nursing care, nurses and state-tested nursing assistants are present 24 hours a day and can offer as much personal care and clinical oversight as is needed,

Q:  My loved one needs more care than they can get at home, but I’m concerned we can’t afford it.

Zoe:  This is a common concern many families have, as providing care over a long period of time can be expensive.  There are various programs that we work with that can help make long-term care affordable.  Long-term Care Insurance is the best protection from the costs of long-term care for those who have had the foresight to purchase a plan, and most plans are accepted by our communities.  If you or your spouse was a veteran during a war-time period, you may qualify for the Veteran’s Aid and Attendance Benefit if you meet the income requirements.  Come see me or visit your local VA office for more information about this benefit.  All our skilled nursing and assisted living campuses also accept Medicaid, ensuring that you don’t have to worry about moving out of our community if funding is an issue down the road.  We encourage people and families to plan for their long-term care needs in their 50’s and 60’s by talking with a financial planner or attorney about options that may be available.

If you have a question, please call Brenda in Bluffton at 419-358-1015 or Zoe in Pandora at 419-384-3218.