Nursing Homes and Residential Care Facilities
Nearly 1,000 nursing homes provide care to an estimated 80,000 Ohio residents. Nursing homes serve consumers needing more medical services than those available through home care, assisted living and other options. Nursing homes do not necessarily mean long-term care; more than half of all nursing home stays are for three months or less. Increasingly, nursing homes are used to complement and supplement other care options, including assisted living, hospital and home care, particularly for short-term rehabilitation.
In addition to nursing homes, almost 600 residential care facilities, also known as assisted living facilities, provide care to an increasing number of consumers who are unable to stay at home, but who need assistance with personal care services and medication administration. Click here for more information on Assisted Living and the Assisted Living Medicaid Waiver.
Licensure and Cost
The Ohio Department of Health licenses and inspects nursing homes and residential care facilities. Also, if a nursing home is certified for Medicare or Medicaid, they must meet federal certification standards in addition to state requirements.
Costs for long term care vary according to the location and type of facility and services offered. Statewide, the average cost of a nursing home is more than $5,000 per month. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services's National Clearinghouse for Long-term Care has a wealth of information about costs of long term care by state.
Making the Decision
Deciding to move into a long-term care facility can be a difficult and emotional decision. Equally difficult is choosing a facility. Any Ohioan wishing to enter a nursing home must participate in a pre-admission review, conducted by skilled staff at a PASSPORT administrative agency. Whenever appropriate, the reviewer will provide a long-term care consultation to help you determine if a nursing home setting is for you, explain your options and help you choose a facility. Due to resource constraints, pre-admission review is not a 24/7 service, though it is available during certain non-business hours in cases where admission to a Medicaid-certified nursing facility is needed when offices are normally closed, such as weekends and around holidays. Nursing facility and hospital staff may access the service by faxing necessary paperwork to 419-222-8262.
The Long-term Care Ombudsman Program provides free and confidential long-term care selection assistance to consumers needing help finding an appropriate long-term care facility. The Ohio Long-term Care Consumer Guide, a service of the Department of Aging, can also help. This interactive resource allows you to compare nursing and residential care facilities, review regulatory data, satisfaction survey results and services provided by each facility. For information on nursing homes outside of Ohio, try Nursing Home Compare, a tool from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.