Choosing a Retirement Community
Choosing a retirement community can be one of the biggest decisions made in a lifetime, so it’s important to understand the differences. There are for-profit and not-for-profit communities, Life Plan and stand-alone communities, and many contracts within these options. It’s possible Carillon isn’t the best choice for every retiree, but we hope you’ll consider our expertise in the planning process to help you make the best possible choice.
Life Plan Community
A Life Plan Community (or Continuing Care Retirement Community) is a particular type of community that offers several levels of health care on one campus, including independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing, rehabilitation and/or memory care. They feature a range of residential living options, services, amenities and health care.It is important to differentiate the three types of Life Plan Communities: “A,” “B” and “C,” because each offers some level of nursing care, when it is needed.
Type “A” communities, also known as LifeCare communities, include unlimited nursing care for life at virtually no increase in the monthly fee. When choosing a LifeCare community, you are guaranteed access to the on-site assisted living and skilled nursing center.
A type “B” community includes nursing care for a limited number of days. Contracts can differ greatly at various communities. For example, one contract may allow 60 days of nursing care without any additional expense, and another may only include 30 days. Regardless, you are required to pay the daily private pay rate for nursing care after these days expire.
Lastly, type “C” communities, also known as rental or fee-for- service communities, do not include any nursing care. You are required to pay the daily private pay rate for nursing care as soon as it is needed.
Non-LifeCare communities, with low or no up-front fees and rental options, may seem like a good value at first glance. The critical difference is that most do not offer the security of unlimited access to health care, which can mean substantial and unpredictable health care costs down the road. Learn more about the benefits of LifeCare here.
Stand-alone care communities typically offer one level of care within their walls: independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing (a term that replaced “nursing home”) and memory care. While these communities may offer psychosocial benefits, a resident is forced to move to another community if they require a higher level of care than is available. Spouses and family members may need to be located at two different communities to receive the individual care each need.