I have been thankful for a long time that I was born toward the end of the baby boom generation. With few exceptions (such as the financial mess we’re in), I believe the leading-edge baby boomers (born around 1946) have lead the charge with innovative initiatives to improve quality of care for our loved ones and eventually, ourselves.
For example, we are witnessing the popularization of alternative living arrangements beyond what many of us had come to expect–that is, once we can’t live on our own, we move in with our children, explore in-home care, or barring none of the aforementioned, are destined to a nursing home.
It’s a comfort to learn there are many options in between (and more are being created that we can’t even imagine). One of these is the continuing care community.
Continuing Care Communities are a great alternative for our aging loved ones and those of us who don’t see ourselves as ready for a nursing home.
Continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs) give us a safe place to “age in-place” among friends and in familiar surroundings.
We move in when independent living gets to be more challenging than we wish to accept. As we age and need more care, we are able to receive care in the same community.
CCRCs give children a level of comfort knowing that Mom or Dad are able to live their final years in comfort. Those who explore this option feel secure that their long-term care needs are assured and that they don’t become a burden to loved ones.
As with any good thing there are risks. If this current economic fallout has had one silver lining, it is that we have witnessed the failure of institutions we believed were secure. Today, we have learned to be more aware. This should give us the strength to ask as many questions as we need to without feeling shame in the face of an otherwise confident sales pitch.
Thanks to leading-edge baby boomers, those of us on the tail end are more aware and can anticipate the risks.
For an eye-opening article with must-read details, click on Continuing-Care Retirement Communities: Weighing the Risks. [Link Updated 11/3/2017 – requires subscription to WSJ.]
Brenda Avadian, MA