Skilled Nursing Care vs. Assisted Living: What's the Difference?

The world of senior living offers many lifestyle options, each designed to cater to varying care needs and goals. Unfortunately, these varying levels can be confusing to someone trying to figure out which one is right for them or someone they love.

Because they both offer support and assistance to residents, skilled nursing care and assisted living services are often mistaken for one another. However, they are quite different.

At Vivage, our communities throughout Colorado, Missouri, and Nevada offer skilled nursing care as well as other support and care options. Through our experience, we have developed a deep understanding of these care options, and we want to help you find the right lifestyle option for yourself or your family. In this article, we highlight the key differences between skilled nursing care and assisted living services.

Understanding Assisted Living Care

According to the American Health Care Association

“Assisted living is part of a continuum of long-term care services that provides a combination of housing, personal care services, and health care designed to respond to individuals who need assistance with normal daily activities in a way that promotes maximum independence.”

Essentially, assisted living was created for individuals who need support and assistance with the activities of daily living (bathing, dressing, etc.). Many assisted living communities are designed like residential apartment homes. Each resident has their own space but benefits from living in a supportive community setting that encourages engagement and socialization.

Every community offers its own set of unique services and amenities, but common assisted living amenities include:

  • 24-hour supervision
  • Dining options
  • Personal care services
  • Community social activities and events
  • Emergency call systems
  • Home maintenance

Understanding Skilled Nursing Care

Skilled nursing communities, also referred to as skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) or nursing homes, provide 24/7 care for individuals requiring specialized medical care or daily therapy services in a skilled-care setting. Designed for individuals managing or recovering from an illness, injury, or surgery, skilled nursing care services are performed by a registered nurse or licensed practical nurse.

At Vivage, we offer skilled nursing and long-term care services to those who need 24-hour care and support in communities throughout Colorado, Missouri, and Nevada. Through personalized care options, we strive to provide a safe home and contribute to high-quality health care experiences.

With over 40 years of experience creating excellence in the skilled nursing field, our team members have an unwavering commitment to providing the highest quality of care possible coupled with sincere compassion. Our team’s focus is on making a difference in the lives of others.

Skilled nursing and long-term care services throughout our Vivage communities are provided to work in conjunction with the medical needs of each individual staying with us. These skilled nursing services may include:

  • On-site physician services
  • Telemedicine options
  • Diabetic care and management
  • Wound care
  • Pain management
  • Medically complex diagnosis
  • IV (infusion) therapies
  • Cardiac rehabilitation
  • Orthopedic rehabilitation
  • Tracheostomy care
  • Restorative nursing program

Key Differences Between Assisted Living & Skilled Nursing Care

While both assisted living services and skilled nursing care fall under the “senior living” umbrella and offer supportive services, the level of care that is provided is where the main difference lies. In an assisted living community, individuals receive care and support that can be done by a certified nursing assistant (CNA), Qualified Medication Administration Personnel (QMAP), or trained caregiver. In contrast, skilled nursing care needs to be provided by a licensed medical professional.

Your health and care needs, or the health and care needs of a family member, will determine which level of care is the most beneficial and will best enhance your quality of life. 

At Vivage, we pride ourselves in offering the Right Care in the Right Place at the Right Time. By this, we mean that the care we provide in our long-term care communities throughout Colorado, Missouri, and Nevada is catered to the personal needs of each of our residents. We work with you and your family to create a customized plan that aims to improve overall health and wellness.

If you would like to learn more about our levels of care, services, or communities, we encourage you to contact a member of the Vivage team today.

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