Frequently Asked Questions
Senior Management Concepts has assisted living communities in 3 states:
- Assisted living in Utah
- Assisted living in Las Vegas
- Assisted living in Seattle
Senior Management Concepts FAQ's
1 - How do I know if my loved one is ready for a “Senior Care Community” (Independent Living, Assisted Living, Memory Care)?
Oftentimes, this is the first question asked. And oftentimes, this question can seem nearly impossible to answer. However, at Senior Management Properties, we pride ourselves in possessing the expertise and empathy necessary to advise families and friends on how to successfully make this important life transition.
Typically, issues with incontinence, medication management, dressing, showering, housekeeping issues, as well as even the simple fact of stepping up one’s level of socialization—from feelings of loneliness and lack of purpose to once again feeling part of a vital community—can influence the decision to make this transition.
At Senior Management Concepts, we have advisors who daily answer the emotional, financial, and medical questions that arise when dealing with senior care issues and we are more than happy to walk you through the decision-making process.
Families and friends find relief in knowing that all Senior Management Concepts properties rent apartments on a month-by-month basis, which lends itself well to the openness and comfortableness of the transition; knowing a senior can reverse his or her decision. Rarely, if ever, is this the case as seniors discover a whole new life filled with great joy, laughter and a socialization that quickly replaces the uncertainty found in an individual residential dwelling.
Pre-planning is vital to a smooth transition, meaning seeking out properties before an unfortunate event takes place. Typically, when discussions begin to surface about the safety issues and the increased needs of a senior, this is the best time to begin looking.
2 - What is Independent Living? Independent Living is just that: living independently in a safe and secure environment.
The goal of all SMC Independent Living properties is to maintain exceptional supportive services to continue to enhance the necessary independence of a resident’s life. This begins with:
- A manned, 24-hour, onsite security program
- A locked apartment that includes a kitchen area, living area and either a bedroom area (for a studio), a one bedroom or a two bedroom apartment that also includes a handicap-accessible bathroom.
- Each apartment includes a microwave, refrigerator and a thermostat, so each senior can adjust the temperature of the room to fit each personal resident’s comfort level.
- Three delicious home-cooked healthy meals
- Professional housekeeping services
- Dependable transportation to appointments
- Convenient laundry services
Additional supportive living services that include--through the assistance of in-home health agencies --light medical assistance through associations with nursing staff and certified nursing assistants. Vital to the independent lifestyle is the daily involvement of residents in purposeful events and activities, including:
- Day trips that include shopping, movies, restaurants, museums, the symphony, live theater, golfing, etc.
- The opportunity to be involved in community causes and volunteer work
- Participation in lifelong learning classes
- Wii tournaments
- Other social events meant to match the needs of both the outgoing and the more reserved personality.
3 - What is Assisted Living?
Senior Management Concept has assisted living in Utah, assisted living in Las Vegas, and assisted living properties in Seattle. Everyone of these properties embrace the privilege of providing 24-hour professional assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs), which is the key that unlocks the door to the wonderful safe and secure world of assisted living. Daily stand-up meetings are held to coordinate the efforts of the entire staff:
- Medical needs
- Dietary requests
- Daily activities
Every other pertinent aspect related to quality caregiving is discussed to make sure each resident’s needs are met and that the staff is on the same page when it comes to quality care issues.
Our state-of-the-art, computerized emergency system makes every resident’s request as simple as the push of a button. Worn on a pendant placed around the neck or the wrist, each response is accurately recorded to assure a timely response that can be tracked by both staff and family.
In addition to this, each property is equipped with daily programs that equal even the most dynamic senior center programs:
- Day trips to such places as theaters, museums, sports venues, restaurants, and the zoo.
- Internal events include Wii sports and other activities, a computer center, an aromatherapy room (at some locations), onsite stylists, daily exercise classes, professional entertainment and other seasonal and holiday events guaranteed to provide purpose and great satisfaction to each resident’s day
- All of the satisfying relationships created through the daily interactions that take place within each property. With the assistance of in-home help and hospice agencies, aging in place is a reality. Where residents with increased needs were formerly transferred to skilled nursing facilities, now skilled nursing assistance can support assisted living residents through the specialized agencies mentioned above. This fact reduces costs to the resident as well as guarantees the comfort of knowing the resident can continue to live in a home atmosphere.
4 - What is Memory Care?
At Senior Management Concepts, our Memory Care communities not only include all of the necessary services related to the activities of daily living, medical management and incontinence issues--all in a round-the-clock safe and secure environment--our caregivers are trained to use “validation therapy” to make sure relating to residents struggling with issues related to dementia, Alzheimer’s and other memory loss-related illnesses are peacefully handled through comfortable dialogue that redirects the resident toward other thoughts and activities. Residents enjoy the one-on-one care given through daily resident grooming, the consistency found in long-term staffing and the use of daily routines that become quickly familiar to the residents. Senior Management Concepts believes one of the positive aspects of memory loss is the supportive people one meets along the way. Memory loss is an illness that can require a lot of emotional support. Senior Management Concepts’ commitment is to support families support by developing close relationships with both the resident and his or her family. Dietary needs are vital to a memory loss resident as they become forgetful about meeting their dietary needs. All Senior Management Concept properties not only provide three meals a day, but also make sure to provide the necessary morning, afternoon and evening hydration as well as healthy snacks.
5 - What if we cannot afford a senior care community?
Senior Management Concepts advisors are known for their specialization in all types of financial relief:
- Aid and Attendance benefits
- Medicaid options
- Reverse mortgages
- Aid and Attendance loan packages
- Other forms of smart financial relief to offer residents a reduction in the costs related to senior care communities.
Each of our advisors offer suggestions, plans and referrals, all for the purpose of alleviating the fears relating to the often asked questions:
- Will my loved one’s finances outlast his or her illness?
- What happens if my loved one runs out of money, what then? Our advisors can easily and confidently answer these questions, so don’t hesitate to call.
6 - How can I assist my loved one in making the transition into a senior care community?
This is another one of the many standard questions asked by family members and friends seeking the comfort and relief that comes from enjoying the life found in senior care communities. And while many seniors consider senior care communities nothing other than the frightful “nursing home” environment they’ve feared for so long, there is a lot that can be done to alleviate these fears, and make the transition easier:
- Property brochures
- Visiting the property’s website
- Resident referrals and comments can also be helpful.
- A complimentary lunch at any Senior Management Concept property (Utah, Seattle or Las Vegas), to learn firsthand the feel of the environment, is also beneficial. Sampling the food and witnessing the property "in full swing" is important for seniors. This can also be a time to visit with the nurse, meet the Program Director, the Wellness Coordinator, the Dietary Director, the Housekeeper, the onsite Stylist, the Maintenance Director, the Receptionist, the Executive Director, and most importantly, the residents.
- Letting your loved one know that this transition can be on a trial basis. This comforts the senior as he or she feels options are still available, making him or her feel as if he or she is still in charge of this decision.
7 - What is a typical day like in a senior care community?
Each resident’s daily routine is as varied as the amount of residents who live each community. We encourage our residents to remember that, while each resident has his or her own apartment, the entire property serves as the resident’s home -- from the spacious living areas to the activities’ room to the library to the courtyards. Just as the success of any camping trip is to spend as little time in the tent as possible, we encourage--through daily visits and contact to the resident’s room—each resident to embrace the entire community, which is why we have found great success with our Resident Council. Consisting of resident and family members (in the case of memory care), this forum exists for the purpose of offering suggestions, sharing concerns and building relationships.
Many of our residents go for walks, develop friendships and immediately begin to create lifelong relationships with staff members.
Some residents arise early while others enjoy sleeping. All residents either dress and groom themselves or are assisted with dressing and grooming. Residents arrive in the dining room for a full breakfast of their choice, served restaurant style, while morning medications are dispersed. Breakfast runs from 7:30 – 9:00 a.m. to accommodate the individualized needs of each resident.
Following breakfast, morning exercise class is held where residents work through modified exercises to help maintain muscle tone and flexibility. Following class, a variety of activities follow:
- Playing cards
- Art classes
- A scenic drive or some other type of interactive offering
Also included in the morning hours are:
- Visits from family members
- In-home health agencies appointments
- Physical therapy sessions
- Excursions with family or friends
- A trip to one’s personal physician
Our properties also offer pre-planned:
- Podiatrist clinics (typically paid for by Medicare)
- Blood pressure clinics
- Optometrist clinics
- Audiology clinics
During this time:
- 24/7 certified nursing assistants continue to respond to calls for assistance with toileting, medication disbursements and other personal needs.
- Housekeeping clean rooms
- Maintenance needs are addressed
- Receptionist coordinates incoming calls and outgoing residents
Lunch begins at 11:30 a.m. and runs until 1:00 p.m. with each resident enjoying another home-cooked meal of their choice or an item selected from the “always” menu. Following lunch, activities continue with such offerings as:
- In-house manicures
- A visit to our onsite stylist
- Professional entertainment
- Lifelong learning classes
- Shopping trips
- Visits to the bank
- Resident council monthly meetings to address resident suggestions or concerns.
Large monthly calendars are posted in each property with a monthly newsletter given to all residents and mailed to the point-of-contact family member.
Dinner is served between 4:30 a.m. and 6:00 p.m., followed by more opportunities to interact, then assistance with bedtime preparations begin.
Certified nursing assistants continue to meet the needs of the residents throughout the night.
8 - How can I be sure my loved one is safe?
We believe that problems are solved before they ever begin by hiring the right people for the job. At Senior Management Concepts we hire only those who meet the high standards set by the corporation. Other safety checkpoints include:
- Running certified background checks on every employee
- Posting contact information for the local ombudsman in the reception area of each property.
- Most importantly, all senior care communities across the country are surveyed each year by state surveyors to make sure each property meets the standards and regulations of medical efficiency and care.
Calls can be made to the local health department to learn the results of the most recent surveys, so feel free to call to learn how safe your resident really is.
9 - What can I do to help make my loved one’s life in a senior care community, the best it can be?
Ongoing and current relationships with family and friends tops the list of what matters most to a resident, and communication is the key. Whether this is through daily visits, phone calls, cards, letters, residents love knowing you still value them for who they have always been and are now. Let them know that, while a senior care community is there to take care of all their increased needs, nothing has changed as far as relationships go. Many of our residents still go on family trips and most continue to attend family get together and outings. Keep them current on events, reassure them that they are well thought of and admired, answer their concerns, and continue to meet their needs, just as you have always done. Feel free to discuss changes in resident health or behaviours with staff. Be an advocate for your loved one’s care. Communicate concerns and feel free to offer suggestions. Let your loved one know how important he or she still is.
For those who live out of town, phone calls, packages can make a resident’s day. Close relationships can be maintained through regular communication.
For those in memory care, personal remembrance books are thoroughly enjoyed and continue to create a strong connection, particularly those books that include a lot of photos. And, always feel free to contact our staff with even the slightest question or request.
If you have questions, all SMC employees are skilled in finding out what your love one’s needs might be, so don’t hesitate to ask. We feel it a privilege to create a home life for your loved one, filled with satisfying relationships that help them continue to value their life, and to have themfeel needed and wanted in a caring environment.