Retired senior woman talking with her caregiver.

Defining the Continuum of Care

So you’ve happily retired near — or maybe in — the lovely hamlet of sunny Juno Beach, Florida, where you’re enjoying the laid-back lifestyle on this stunningly beautiful barrier island.

But while you’re enjoying the beach life today, you’ve been thinking more and more about your senior living options. You’ve started to ask yourself some thought-provoking questions:

Is independent living at a retirement community right for me at this point in my life?

Would a Life Plan Community, with independent living and assisted living, skilled nursing and memory care be a better choice for me?

What’s the value of having a continuum of care for me, and for my spouse?

These are all great questions to ask yourself — and even better questions to have answers to — before the day comes that you need care.

Is independent living a good option now?

Independent living at a retirement community may be ideal for you right now, even if you’re currently living independently in your own home and enjoying an active lifestyle.

That’s because independent living at a retirement community offers you maintenance-free living inside and outside your residence, delicious chef-made meals, numerous services and amenities, a calendar of activities, events and a community full of neighbors who are eager to get to know you.

Many older adults choose to move to independent living while they and their spouses are independent because they want to enjoy the community’s active lifestyle now.

In fact, independent living in a senior living community can offer you even more independence than living in your own home. You no longer need to worry about chores like housekeeping or home maintenance, lawn care and landscaping, cooking or doing the dishes afterwards. The community’s staff takes care of all that and more for you. The only thing you need to do is focus on making each day more meaningful than the day before it.

What is a continuum of care?

In the context of senior living, a continuum of care means having additional levels of care beyond just independent living. That may include assisted living, skilled nursing, memory care and rehabilitation.

A Continuing Care Retirement Community, or CCRC, is a retirement community that offers some or all those levels of care on its campus. Residents can move into independent living and live actively and independently. If they need a higher level of care, they know they’ll receive the care they need without having to change their address.

To become a resident, a CCRC may charge you a one-time, upfront entrance fee, which may be partly or fully refundable to your estate. That covers the lifetime use of your residence. You’ll also pay a monthly service fee every month. This monthly fee pays for expenses like most of your utilities, entertainment, housekeeping, maintenance and many other services and amenities the community offers.

As you start to learn more about senior living communities, you’ll find there are many types of CCRC contracts. Some CCRCs offer a rental contract, which means you pay month to month. But if you or your spouse need care, your monthly service fee may increase substantially for that care.

Other CCRCs offer what’s known as a Life Care contract, which generally requires an upfront entrance fee and higher monthly fees. The big benefit of this contract is that if you or your spouse need any senior health-related services, such as assisted living, skilled nursing or memory care, you and your spouse get that care with little to no increase in your monthly fees.

Life Care is widely considered a desirable contract option because of the predictable, stable fee structure it provides.

What does a continuum of care provide for me and my spouse?

Choosing to live in a community that offers you a continuum of care offers you and your family two things: a secure plan.

When you choose to live in a CCRC, you’re now in full control of your future healthcare and financial decisions. You have the security of knowing that your hard-earned retirement savings are protected. You also know you have a smart, secure plan in place for any future care you or your spouse may need.

You also have a plan for tomorrow, which is something you simply can’t put a price on. Neither you, your spouse nor your family needs to make an emergency decision during a health crisis. If something happens, you know exactly where you’ll receive that care, who will provide that care to you and how much you’ll pay for it.

Discover all the advantages of The Waterford

When you choose a retirement community like The Waterford, you’re making two smart decisions in one. You’re opting to enjoy every moment today while taking full control of your future, for both you and your spouse. You’re choosing where you want to live, how you want to live and how and where you want to be cared for if your health needs change.

And when you choose The Waterford, you’re selecting a community that has its eye on the future — with an exciting $100 million expansion that will add even more to an already remarkable Life Care community.

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Take the first step toward learning more. Contact us today to discover what your retirement could look like for you at The Waterford.