Questions And Answers About Short-Term Skilled Nursing Home Care

Posted on: 16 December 2015


If you've recently experienced an injury or a major illness requiring a hospital stay, you may be a little wary about returning home right away. This is especially true if you live alone or don't have someone at home to help care for you. Fortunately, you do have an option – short-term skilled nursing care. If you choose this type of care, you will enter a nursing home for a short period of time. This home focuses on rehabilitation so that patients can resume their previous level of independence upon release. The following guide can help you better understand these facilities.

How is short-term rehab care paid for?

There are several options when it comes to paying for this sort of care. If you are on Medicare, your insurance will cover the rehab if you are admitted into the program within 30 days of a hospital stay that lasted at least 3 days. Medicare will only cover the first 20 days fully, and then they pay a portion of the costs for an additional 80 days. Supplemental health insurance or a long-term care plan may also provide coverage for rehab nursing care, or it may cover the portion that isn't covered by the Medicare plan.

Do you have any privacy?

You may need to share a room, depending on your condition and the facility. Private rooms are sometimes available, but these may require an out-of-pocket charge or they may be reserved for those with conditions that require privacy, such as people who need middle-of-the-night care that would disturb a roommate. Shared rooms still afford some privacy, though. There is a curtain or panel that you can draw across the middle of the room for privacy. There are also usually gardens and reading rooms on-site where you can go if you want to be alone.

What is the schedule like?

All short-term facilities run off of a similar basic schedule. Meal times are set and served in a group dining room to encourage socializing between patients. There is also usually an in-room meal service available. In many cases, you order your meal selections a day in advance. Physical and occupational therapies are usually scheduled in the morning or early afternoon, between meal times. In the evening there may be social activities, such as book groups, movies, or game nights. 

Will you be on your own after release?

Upon release, you will be instructed about your at-home care. If your injury or illness has affected your level of independence, you may have a home visit scheduled to help you adjust your home to your new level of care. For example, someone may visit your home and recommend mobility aids, such as toilet seat lifts, and help you purchase or file claims for these devices. You may also have an occupational or physical therapist visit your home for a few in-home sessions. These sessions help you regain your strength and ability to perform your daily activities with minimal to no assistance. In some cases, the nursing care staff will prescribe certain exercises or therapies for you to continue at home.

To learn more about home-term nursing, get in touch with a care facility like The Village At Morrisons Cove.