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Deciding on Long-Term Care
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To determine which care option is the best fit for you or your loved one, contact your  area agency on aging and request a free assessment. Your Area Agency on Aging will be able to connect you with available services, assist in provider selection, and answer your questions about your care options.

Home- and Community-Based Services

Most older Ohioans prefer to live independently in their own homes, in their communities, surrounded by family and friends, for as long as they can. But, many need some help to do so. In your own home or the home of a loved one, the services you may receive vary considerably, but most provide meals, housekeeping, laundry, transportation and social activities. They also offer personal care, such as assistance with eating, bathing, grooming and personal hygiene. Some nursing care is also provided, including medication administration and dressing changes.

Assisted Living (Residential Care) Facilities

Assisted living combines a home-like setting with personal support services to provide more intensive care than is available through home care services. Assisted living homes provide older adults with an alternative to nursing facility care that is both less expensive and less restrictive.  Assisted living residences vary considerably, but most provide meals, housekeeping, laundry, transportation, and social activities. They also offer personal care, such as assistance with eating, bathing, grooming and personal hygiene. Some nursing care is also provided, including medication administration and dressing changes.

In Ohio, the typical "Assisted Living" home is licensed as a Residential Care Facility; many people use the terms interchangeably.  The Ohio Department of Health licenses residential care facilities and conducts on-site inspections/surveys for compliance with state rules and regulations.

Nursing Homes, including short-term rehabilitation

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 homes 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. The Ohio Department of Health licenses and/or certifies nursing homes and conducts on-site inspections/surveys for compliance with state and federal rules and regulations.

Residential Facilities Class 2 (Adult Group Homes)

Residential Facilities serve those with disabilities, including physical, mental, cognitive, or behavioral health needs. There are over 750 group homes in Ohio. They provide room, board, and personal care for individuals who need assistance with daily living. 

Residents may have a variety of disabilities, including mental illness. These homes may be a good option for persons who want to maintain some level of independence and don’t require hospitalization or nursing home care, but still may need assistance with daily living such as meals, housekeeping, and medication management. Facilities are operated and staffed by either an agency or a home owner. Facilities that serve residents with serious mental illness are required to have their staff annually trained in the care and supervision of the needs of these residents.

The Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services licenses these homes and conducts on-site inspections for compliance with state rules. Facilities receive a two-year license to operate and must undergo a comprehensive onsite inspection of the home in which inspectors verify the safe and sanitary condition of the facility, the capability of the operator and staff to meet their responsibilities in providing supervision and personal care services and the appropriateness of the placement of each resident in the adult care setting.

Specifically, these homes provide accommodations, supervision, and personal care services to any of the following: 

  • One or two unrelated persons with mental illness;
  • One or two unrelated persons who are receiving residential state supplement payments; or,
  • Three to sixteen unrelated adults.