WHAT IS SENIOR LIVING AND CONTINUING CARE?
At Auria we refer to Senior Living and not “retirement” because we believe that this stage of your life is not about retiring, it’s about a different set of needs and lifestyle choices defined by happiness, security, peace of mind and health.
Below are some of the terms we use when talking about senior living and the various ways we ensure that residents at our Auria Senior Living communities enjoy their best quality of life. Every single day.
SENIOR LIVING COMMUNITY
A senior living community is a purpose-built, secure community in which older adults can live an enjoyable, hassle-free life, with access to a wide variety of amenities and support. Our residents are typically over 70, and we provide continuing care and pro-active wellness interventions based on the unique needs of each individual.
Independent living is for people who are completely self-sufficient but want access to lifestyle amenities and assistance when necessary. Residents live in standalone houses or apartments within our Auria communities, where they have access to dedicated staff for maintenance and housekeeping, multiple dining options, 24/7 emergency response, wellbeing checks as well as a variety of wellness, social and enrichment programs and events. Additional support is always on hand, if desired. This is ‘hassle-free living’ with the peace of mind of knowing that all the help you need is at hand, whenever, or wherever you may need it.
CONTINUING CARE RETIREMENT COMMUNITY
A continuing care retirement community (“CCRC”) offers fully independent living, as well as various types of assisted living in one place, ranging from home-based care to supportive care (frail care) and dedicated dementia care. In a CCRC, your individualised care plan changes if or when your needs change, and any assistance or care that you may need, can be adapted to your unique requirements. This kind of arrangement is ideal for couples, whose needs as individuals may be quite different, yet they can remain together in the same living environment, each with the appropriate levels of support. It also means that you only need to move once. Once you are living in a CCRC, you will never need to move anywhere else for reasons of health or care needs.
The support implied in assisted living ranges from almost complete independence to needing assistance with some or even many of what are termed ‘activities of daily living’ (ADLs). ADLs are defined as the skills or abilities one needs to care for oneself independently such as dressing, bathing and getting around. They can also include managing household tasks, meal preparation and taking daily medications, among other things. Someone may progressively need help with more ADLs as they get older, or they can require assistance for a limited period of time, such as when recuperating from surgery or illness. We understand that ADL needs may be neither static nor linear. We offer whatever support you need for your situation at the time.
At Auria, we respect personal choice, and understand that many people prefer to “age in place”. To the extent possible, we are able to deliver most care and support services in your home within our Auria communities. This means that even if your needs change, you may never have to move into a dedicated assisted living or care environment, as we can bring the care and support you need, directly to you in order for you to:
• Get better (e.g. acute illness recovery period);
• Regain your independence;
• Become as self-sufficient as possible;
• Maintain your current condition or level of function for as long as possible;
• Remain in your preferred environment for as long as possible.
SUPPORTIVE CARE (FRAIL CARE)
Frail care is a term that is widely used, although in a modern continuum of care, we feel it to be somewhat outdated. We certainly do provide all the ADL-assistance required by someone who might be considered frail, but we don’t see it as a category, nor as the beginning of an inevitable decline. Our continuum of care approach means that you receive the assistance you need, but within a supportive environment that presents the opportunity for an improved quality of life. Our many and varied programmes range from physical exercise aimed at improved agility to mentally stimulating activities, enjoyable hobbies and social interaction. Frail care is the prevention or delaying of functional decline in older persons who are in need of assistance with ADLs due to their general health status (which can be of chronic nature or due to the natural aging process) in a place where they have access to care assistance and/or specialised nursing services 24/7.
This is a very specific requirement and one which requires a unique care environment. Dementia is a general term for diseases and conditions characterised by a decline in memory, problem-solving, language and other thinking skills that affects people’s ability to perform daily tasks. Although it can occur at any age, it is more common in people over 80 years of age and is certainly one of the most common causes of dependency in older adults. We offer dedicated dementia care in certain of our Auria communities. Our clinical-social hybrid approach is based on an internationally successful example in which people with dementia are integrated socially within a secure and controlled community, allowing them the opportunity to benefit from the many activities and specialised support available. Our focus in dementia care is to establish an authentic caring relationship by knowing the person and the person’s reality and to support meaningful engagement through a collaborative team approach. Families are encouraged to participate in all decision-making processes and in a regular assessment programme. Through this holistic, person-centred approach, our residents can enjoy their best quality of life. Every single day. Our philosophy in this regard aims to break down the misunderstandings and stigmas associated with dementia, which often stand in the way of optimal care.