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About Life Care Services
In keeping with the core principles established upon its founding four decades ago, Life Care Services, a privately held company, strives to provide quality care for the seniors who live in one of the more than 100 communities it serves. Nearly 30,000 elders in more than 25 states and the District of Columbia benefit from the services Life Care Services provides within its continuing- care retirement communities and at-home programs.
The organization began in 1971 as a subsidiary of Des Moines' The Weitz Company, a general contracting company said to be "the oldest west of the Mississippi," specializing in the construction of retirement communities. Life Care Services, as the company was called by 1976, became a top developer of senior living communities, also providing management services. By the 1980s, Life Care Services developed - and, in many cases, built - 31 communities for senior citizens throughout the United States. In 1979, the company also began providing management services to other senior living communities.
By 2011, Life Care Services expanded its offerings to include services for both nonprofit and for-profit continuing-care retirement communities. Today, the company continues to closely follow its core principles of serving the customer first and foremost, dealing honestly and fairly, and maintaining a long-term perspective.
Life Care Services' Portfolio
Currently, 12 retirement communities are under the ownership of Life Care Services, which also takes care of their day-to-day operation. These communities, which encompass assisted living, independent living and skilled nursing setups, range from 95 to 572 living units. Life Care Services also manages many more properties - a total of 82 additional communities across the country. Seniors can spend their retirement in picturesque Washington state, in sunny Florida, or anywhere in between.
Continuing Care - and More
In addition to its core continuing care retirement communities, Life Care Services continues to expand its specialized services to include rehabilitation and nursing centers, assisted living and independent living communities, and memory care facilities.
Senior Living Options
Each community provides different levels of care for their senior residents. In many cases, the communities are geared toward long-term residency. Independent living options include monthly rental apartments or townhomes that may include meals and housekeeping services, along with social activities.
Another choice is a continuing care retirement community (CCRC), which provides additional services that accommodate the ever-changing needs of its aging residents. These services are generally outlined in a contract agreed to by the resident senior and can include housekeeping and maintenance for their home, in addition to meals, health services and programs designed to meet educational and socialization needs. Residents may pay a one-time entrance fee and a monthly payment; in other situations, the residences are rentals.
For those who would benefit from additional specialized care, a number of Life Care's communities offer assisted living services, where, as part of their situation-specific monthly rental fee, residents receive assistance with everyday tasks such as bathing and dressing, along with medication monitoring and housekeeping.
If your loved one suffers from memory impairment, such as that caused by dementia or Alzheimer's, Life Care's Memory Care program may be the best choice. Residents benefit from the help of specially trained staff members and a program that's specifically tailored to the individual's needs. Family members can take comfort in knowing their loved one is receiving top-quality care while living in familiar surroundings.
Sometimes, a family member needs around-the-clock care. Whether they're needed on a long- term or temporary basis, Life Care's skilled nursing services ensure top-quality, attentive care from licensed professionals. Often, this type of care follows an illness or major surgery to repair joints such as hips and knees.
Home Health Services
For seniors who prefer to receive care within their own homes, Life Care Services offers its Health at Home program, which has 17 offices within 11 states, providing home care and companion services that can help ease the burden felt by relatives who serve as caretakers for their ill elders. Services include regular visits, management of medicines and medical care, including transitions from rehabilitation centers to home.
Services and Amenities
Comfort is the number-one aim of Life Care Services' communities, which reflect local architecture and tastes, making new residents immediately feel welcome and at home. Updated dÃ©cor and access to modern conveniences such as wireless Internet service increase the appeal.
Many of Life Care Services' locations include, linen service and housekeeping amenities, and transportation to medical appointments. Residents also enjoy meals in stylish formal dining rooms or in casual cafÃ©s where they can enjoy coffee and conversation.
Active seniors have plenty to keep them busy -- they can organize card games and book clubs, or sharpen their creative writing skills. In warmer locales, swimming pools and sunshine beckon residents to try their hand at water aerobics. But stimulation isn't limited to inside the community -- there are trips to off-site events such as concerts, plays and sporting events. Personal grooming services are often available on-site.
Safety is a top priority, which is why many locations boast 24-hour security on the grounds and a continually monitored emergency call system. Additionally, communities are equipped with fire detection services and on-site fire sprinklers.
Many of the company's communities encourage volunteerism among its seniors and provide opportunities to get involved within their community and beyond, such as through a popular mentoring program that pairs staff and residents, leading to the development of many friendships. Residents are encouraged to participate in on- and off-campus activities and events that foster both independence and teamwork.
Some communities offer apartment or condominium rentals, while others require monthly fees dependent on the level of care needed. A monthly fee may also apply to cover dining and housekeeping services. Select communities may accept Medicare or Medicaid to help offset the cost of medical care for residents in specialized care programs, such as Skilled Nursing or Memory Care. Those interested in moving to a Life Care Services community have access to residency counselors who guide you toward the best living situation based on your finances.
Making the Transition Easier
It's surely a daunting task, but you don't have to make decisions alone. The experienced staff is with you every step of the way when choosing a community and level of care, answering any questions you may have throughout the process.
Moving into a smaller home usually involves paring down possessions such as furniture and clothing, but Life Care Services recommends professionals who can help with your downsizing needs -- and, in some cases, the company-managed communities provide assistance as part of their services.
The Staff at Life Care Services
Life Care Services believes its elder residents deserve to have satisfactory interactions with their staff members, and to this end employs dedicated professionals with the skills to do their job well and truly care for their seniors. Employees are expected to perform their duties with "integrity, honesty and transparency."
Residents can take comfort in the fact that their community's executive directors receive 12 to 18 months of formal training and hands-on experience meant to impart the knowledge and skills necessary to successfully cater to the needs of their seniors.
Some seniors at Life Care Services' communities fulfill a leadership role by joining the Resident Advisory Council, which periodically organizes trips to conferences across the country, where they discuss educational and problem-solving discussions about improvements and concepts in senior living.
Experts from Life Care Services periodically speak at senior living conferences throughout the year, sharing insight and bringing back ideas that enrich the lives of their communities' residents.
Speak To a Care Advisor
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