Answers on Aging

Episode 6 (part 4 of 4): How do I know when it is time for a lot more help? A breakdown about the differences between Memory Care/Certified Dementia (or “Alzheimer’s), Units, Nursing Homes, and Hospice Care.

By Todd Whatley and Sara Scott


Learn how to determine when you or your loved one is appropriate for memory care/dementia units, nursing homes, or hospice care.

Knowing where to start when finding a LTC community is crucial, and understanding the differences between classifications of levels in order to allow thrive in the most appropriate level of care for you or your aging loved one. 

Memory Care/Certified Dementia Units:
“Memory Care Unit”= can be a designated wing, free-standing facility, assisted living level or nursing home level; may not always require dementia diagnosis.

Certified Dementia/Alzheimer’s Unit= special certification awarded after extra measures and regulations met to include: physical environment,all departments require staffing training requirements, must have some type of dementia diagnosis

Nursing Home (short term) Skilled Nursing

Nursing Home (long term) convalescent care

Hospice Care= End of life; 6 months or less prognosis

The REAL level you or your loved one needs vs what you want to believe they need can often be very different.

Learn your or your loved ones needs
Get familiar with options in your area per those needs
Be prepared to make the transition

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Todd Whatley and Sara Scott

Sara Scott is a licensed Nursing Home Administrator and consultant to attorneys regarding nursing home issues and also works with families to find the best level of care for their needs. She has worked with countless seniors and their families since 2008 in various capacities and has a sincere motivation for helping those individuals achieve the best quality of life possible. Todd Whatley is a Certified Elder Law Attorney with 20+ years of experience and is past President of the National Elder Law Foundations the governing organization over all Certified Elder Law Attorneys nationally. He has worked with thousands of families helping them plan for the future and get the care they need without losing everything they have to pay for care. Todd and Sara also have a live weekly local radio show on, every Wednesday morning, from 9am-10am, Central Time, and would love for you to check it out!

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