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Why RAL Makes Level of Care Easy

Residential assisted living homes are growing at a rapid rate because it is an ideal environment for our aging senior population. This growth curve is spiraling upward as a result of lower resident-to-caregiver ratios, lower fall risk, and a more intimate setting. These are a few of the components that keep RAL homes ahead of the competition, in addition to quality levels of care. Defining a clear path for levels of care makes it easier for potential residents to understand the specifics of what your RAL home has to offer.  What are the different levels of care in assisted living?

Different Levels Of Care

There is a huge variety of senior living options. This broad industry covers every scope of care for older adults who face various challenges and those with specific preferences. This variety of choices often leads to feelings of confusion. Even after seniors in need of assisted living narrow down their search for a RAL home, they soon discover that most homes offer multiple levels of care. Different levels of care come with added costs. Understanding these levels of care gives seniors and their loved ones an advantage when attempting to identify the perfect RAL home. Knowing the different levels of care equips potential clients with the necessary questions to ask and the support available at different assisted living homes.

The Three Levels Of Care In Assisted Living 

Level I Services

This is a low level of care. Level I residents need occasional supervision, assistance or reminders to perform some daily activities, but are independent in other activities. They may require assistance or reminders to take medications, or may be able to take medications independently.

  • Medication management
  • Medication assistance
  • Prescription refill assistance and ordering new medications
  • Medication clarification as needed

Level II Services

This is a moderate level of care. Level II residents require more substantial support with some activities of daily living. Assistance with medications may be provided.

  • Level I Medication management
  • Assistance with the six Activities of Daily Living (ADL): 
  1. Bathing 
  2. Continence 
  3. Dressing 
  4. Eating 
  5. Toileting
  6. Transferring 

Level III Services

This is a high level of care. Level III care is for residents that need frequent and comprehensive assistance with activities of daily living. Staff administers medications or assists the resident to take them. Staff also monitors the residents for the effects of medications.

  • Level I and Level II management and care
  • Homemaker Services 
  • Assistance, support and transportation to physical appointments and procedures
  • Supplies for Activities of Daily Living  

Memory Care

Many residential assisted living care homes also feature memory care as an optional service. This is the added function of a higher level of care for seniors with dementia. They place emphasis on special programs from dining to failure free programs. Caregivers receive specialized training in dementia-related care and family members are offered educational opportunities to learn more about supporting seniors with memory loss. 

Levels Of Care

There is a distinct difference between the three levels of care. Assisted living is designed to help seniors who need assistance with daily activities. These activities range from personal care and medication management to mobility and meal preparation.

 On the other hand, assisted living is not for individuals who need daily skilled nursing care, such as those administered in nursing homes by healthcare providers. Based on state regulations, residential assisted living homes are licensed to provide care for individuals defined by three levels of services. Providers who are licensed for Levels I and II services can also admit residents who require lower levels of care.

Levels Of Care Allows Seniors To Age In Place

Even though assisted living is governed by state guidelines, it is not as heavily regulated as skilled nursing homes. Instead, residential assisted living homes are able to offer excellent care in a less clinical environment. Residents receive professional assistance without feeling like they are living in a hospital environment. Offering different levels of care allows assisted living owners and operators to hire the appropriate staff they need to give the assistance residents require. Dividing RAL homes based on levels of care allow operators to have the staff available to offer unique solutions. Levels of care also allow residents to age in place longer, as they are able to receive more care while in the same RAL home. Seniors are no longer relocating from assisted living to skilled nursing because of chronic pain or complex medical conditions. Instead, residents safely stay in their assisted living home with the support of caregivers. 

Assessment And Cost Of Care

During the admissions assessment process, the necessary level of care will be determined. If the level of care exceeds what your RAL home is licensed to offer, you will need to refer the potential resident to another location. It is important to note that a resident’s level of care should be reassessed on a regular basis. This is because a resident’s level of care usually impacts the cost of their care. It is important to consider that a resident’s health status may change over time, and these changes will affect the cost. For example, dementia care is more costly than level I care because more training and additional staffing is required. 

Wide Range Of Residential Assisted Living Homes 

RAL makes it easy to attract new residents and also makes it easier to market to specific groups of seniors, by establishing clear levels of care.

For additional information about owning and operating a residential assisted living home, contact RALA is an assisted living education company that teaches everything from A-Z about meeting the rising demand for senior housing. The 3-day accelerated RAL course empowers students to achieve true financial independence.

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