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Who Usually Needs Long-Term Care Services And What Are They?
Posted By: Becky Davis

Those who cannot perform daily tasks anymore usually seek long-term care services, also known as nursing care. Normal aging, disease or disability can cause someone to need this type of support. Long-term care is not rehabilitation or treatment for you or your loved one to gain independence, but it is a vital service. It provides a way to help you or your loved one live their fullest life under the circumstances. It often provides a level of support to the family that allows them to better love their long-term care resident. If you are not sure if long-term care is right for you or your family member, understanding what this service is and who it benefits can help.

Who needs long-term care?

People of any age can need this service, but it is often considered for the elderly. This is because people lose the ability to perform activities of daily living as they age. If you struggle with daily functions, long-term care can benefit you. These activities include:

  • Bathing: Getting into or out of a bathtub or shower and washing your hair and body
  • Dressing: Putting on or taking off essential clothing
  • Continence: Having control of bladder/bowel function as well as associated personal hygiene
  • Toileting: Getting to, on and off the toilet; maintaining related personal hygiene
  • Transferring: Getting into or out of bed, chairs or wheelchairs
  • Eating: Feeding yourself using utensils and containers or medical systems

The older you are, the more likely you are to need nursing care. Those who have cognitive impairments may need specialized help as well. Because women tend to live longer than men, they will be more likely to receive long-term care. If you have debilitating conditions like Parkinson’s disease or movement issues, you can benefit from this service.

Who provides long-term services?

Many people receive long-term care at home by certified caregivers, but this is not an option for everyone. When these services are coming from friends or family members, the care cannot be monitored by a home health agency. This means that you or your loved one may not be receiving the best services possible. The same can be true of assisted living facilities or adult day-care centers because they are sometimes not staffed or equipped properly. Family members who offer long-term care to their loved ones are often exhausted and discouraged, making it hard to enjoy the time spent with them.

Facilities that offer long-term care are the best equipped to handle the needs of those who cannot live alone. Long-term care facilities sometimes offer this service alongside skilled nursing, which is meant for those with medical issues. There are facilities that specifically take care of those with Alzheimer’s or dementia as well.

Amenities at long-term care facilities

It can be difficult to choose the right long-term care facility for your loved one. There is a stigma that facilities focused on care for the elderly are low-quality and dangerous. But this isn't true. There are many places that offer safe, comfortable senior living. Some provide shared living quarters while others have private rooms in household environments with a kitchen, activity areas, and more. You can find other amenities and services in these facilities including the following.

  • Meals prepared by a chef
  • Customized and 24 hour care
  • Areas for families to visit
  • Activities and events
  • Workspaces
  • Transportation
  • Gym services
  • Television and internet
  • Religious services
  • Spa treatments
 

Long-term care services in Amarillo, Texas

If you or your loved one would like to learn more about long-term care services at Bivins Pointe in Amarillo, we would love to visit with you. We have large, comfortable private rooms with many amenities. Call us at (806) 350-2200 or contact us by email for more information. You can visit our facilities for a tour anytime at 6600 Killgore Dr. Come see how our caring team can help you and your family.


Amarillo's Prayer Breakfast
Posted By: Becky Davis

In the 50’s and 60’s Amarillo’s “Cotton” John was our most well-known radio celebrity. He was the Farm Director for KGNC radio and yes I know that fits into our stereo typical profile of someone from Texas, Stetson hat and all, but who cares he was ours. Every day at 6:00 am he would start his ag-report by saying; “Good morning, this is the best part of the Golden Spread day.”

Now I know this because my dad would get up every morning at 5:30 am to start the coffee and turn the radio on, which was sitting on the kitchen cabinet next to my brother and mine’s bedroom door. Whether we wanted to or not, Doug and I grew up to be morning people -- well I did anyway.

I love early morning for a lot of reasons. First, there is no one else up to bother you (cynical I know). Second, it is like starting with a fresh sheet of paper that you can write or draw anything you want. Third, it is a wonderful time to pray and read God’s word.

The third reason is why I am writing this blog about getting up, as some of you might put it, EARRRRLY.

Every year, on the Tuesday just before Thanksgiving, Amarillo has its annual Prayer Breakfast. It has grown to be one of the best attended prayer breakfasts in the nation. It features a well done breakfast, the joint choirs of all the Amarillo high schools, a well-known speaker, some serious prayer and it is all done in time for people to get to work on time.

*This year, Chad Hennings will be the featured speaker. Chad has lived an exciting life that includes winning the Super Bowl 3 times with the Dallas Cowboys and flying 45 successful combat missions with the United States Air Force. Currently Chad is an author and sought-after speaker who has taken his message of “a lifestyle of excellence” to some of the most distinguished executive audiences across the world.

Bivins has had a representative every year since I have been with them. This year Bivins Pointe has a table for eight and I would like to invite any of you that might like to attend to let me or Becky Davis know. Even if our table fills and someone would still like to go, we will provide a ticket - there is always room. Breakfast starts at 6:00 am and the program will start at 6:45 am. It will be over by 8:00 am to make sure people can get to work.

 Please let me know at - Jeff (806) 673-1197 or leave a message for Becky (806) 350-2206

 As always I am praying for you.

Jeff Messer, Bivins Chaplain

*from amarilloprayerbreakfast.com


How You Can Make The Right Decision When Choosing Senior Living
Posted By: Becky Davis

If you or your senior parent want to maintain an engaged lifestyle, but can no longer live without care, senior living might be a good option. These communities can provide you peace of mind, safety, and comfort. The first important decision you must make is to choose the right type of care for you. To do this, you should understand the types of care available and what questions to ask.

Determine the type of care you need

If you are ready to choose a senior community for yourself or a loved one, it is important to understand each type. A variety of communities fall under the general term of “Senior Living.” You can choose from independent living for retirees to a place where residents receive memory care, rehabilitation, or skilled nursing.

Independent living communities

Services offered here are usually designed to provide a lifestyle that is maintenance free. Home repair, snow removal, lawn care, trash removal, and other services are a part of the package. Some communities even offer laundry, housekeeping, and dining options. These facilities are known for engaging residents in life enrichment, programs, trips, and activities.

Assisted living facilities

Some seniors need more help from their caregivers like bathing, dressing or medication organization. Restaurant style dining is offered at assisted living facilities, but it should be nutritious. Social activities, life enrichment, and physical fitness programs are often included as well.

Long-term care

If your family member needs higher levels of healthcare, then you should consider a long-term care facility The staff is capable of watching over residents every day and keeping them safe. These places will help with daily tasks, but they are equipped for more specialized care as well.

Memory care centers for those with Alzheimer's or dementia involve 24/7 care by trained staff members. These nursing homes offer enrichment programs that are designed for those with memory loss and management of medicine. Transportation, dedicated dining assistance, laundry, housekeeping, and personal services are also offered. The biggest advantage of this kind of senior living is that it is designed to keep those with memory loss safe.

Rehabilitation therapy

Sometimes, getting care means staying somewhere temporarily. Rehabilitation therapy and skilled nursing are often offered in the same facility. If you need short-term rehabilitation, these clinics can work well for you. Occupational, physical, and speech therapy are usually offered by trained therapists and skilled nurses. You can also find other amenities in these facilities like fine dining, spas, and gyms.

Ask questions

No matter what type of senior living facility you are looking for, make sure to book appointments at the places that interest you. Prepare questions ahead of time to find out if they offer the services you need and want. Think about places where you can transition into assisted living or a nursing home if necessary.

You should read reviews online or speak with people who have used the facilities to get an idea of their reputation. You can also call and ask about their success rates, what kind of activities they offer, and about the privacy and comfort of their rooms.

Rehabilitation, skilled nursing, and long-term care at Bivins Pointe

The experts at Bivins Pointe in Amarillo, Texas can help you make the decisions that come with choosing senior living. Our experienced and dedicated team offers skilled nursing, rehab therapy, and Long-term Care. If you want to learn more about our Amenities, the Bfit Gym, and Rehabilitation and Recovery, call us at (806) 350-2200 or Contact Us by email. You can also schedule a tour and visit us in person at 6600 Killgore Dr. in Amarillo, Texas.


Choosing A Short-Term Post-surgery Rehabilitation Center
Posted By: Becky Davis

Sometimes a physician may recommend that you or a loved one continue recovery at a rehab and skilled nursing facility after hospitalization. Your hospital visit could be due to illness, injury, or a planned surgery. Most people want to get out of the hospital and go home. But, taking advantage of rehabilitation after surgery at a skilled nursing facility can help prevent return trips to the hospital and improve your overall outcome.

You might ask yourself how you can best choose a rehabilitation center. By following a few tips, you can make a decision that you are pleased with.

Make sure the facility offers all the therapy services you need

It is important that the facility you choose offers everything you need. You may need a variety of therapy types after your surgery, including physical, occupational, and even speech therapy. It is best to know exactly what types of therapy you will need before your surgery so you can plan ahead for your care.

If you are getting physical therapy, the staff should be able to help you focus on strength, mobility, motor control, safety, and pain management. Occupational therapy will help you get back to doing the things you once could on your own. Speech therapy will help you chew and speak without difficulty or pain, but it can also help with language issues and cognitive reasoning.

Check the success rates at each facility

Ask questions to determine the success of each rehabilitation center you are considering. Different facilities have varying levels of experience. Find out the percentage of patients who are able to live independently and return home after discharge. Even more important, find out how many patients have to go back to the hospital.

Ask if they take Medicare

You should check to see if the rehab facility takes insurance or Medicare. Reconsider using them for rehabilitation after surgery if they do not accept these. You want to be sure that nothing, including financial stress, gets in the way of you returning to full health.

Ask about the ratio of staff to patients

This is an important question to consider when you are making your choice. Ask each facility about their ratios, because the key to quality care is a therapist’s ability to provide adequate services. When this ratio is good, the likelihood of successful patient recovery increases.

Find out about their reputation

Ask friends and family to tell you about any experience they've had with the facility you are considering for short-term care. Personal testimonies are a great source of information. You can read reviews and experiences online as well. This advice and information can help you make an objective decision.

Consider the issues of privacy and comfort

If privacy during recovery is important to you or your loved one, then make sure you understand what the room arrangements will be like. Not all locations will provide private rooms. You should be able to visit the rehabilitation facility to take a tour and ask about the extra services they provide, like spa treatments, fun events, and meals.

Think about the location

The location of your rehab center is not likely to be your top priority, but you should give it some consideration. Your spirits will be kept up if you can have frequent visitors who live nearby. If your loved one is choosing a rehabilitation facility, be sure to let them know you would like to visit them and be a part of their recovery too.

Rehabilitation after surgery at Bivins Pointe in Amarillo, TX


4 Types Of Physical Therapy: How They Benefit Seniors
Posted By: Becky Davis

If you are a senior recovering from surgery, injury, or illness, it is likely that you will need to participate in a specialized rehabilitation program. Rehabilitation is essential for improving quality of life, reducing your pain, and restoring functionality. Your rehab program will be molded to fit your needs and abilities and will include speech, occupational, and physical therapy.

Physical rehabilitation is designed to return your mobility and alleviate your pain. Professional therapists know how to work with older adults so that exercise is done in an effective and safe manner. The following are the main types of physical therapy for seniors and how they can benefit you.

Neurological physical therapy

This kind of physical therapy works a little differently than the others because it focuses on the brain and the body. A neurological therapist helps patients with Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, ALS, and brain injuries. They help you to adapt to muscle loss impairment and visual, mobility, and balance issues so that you are more comfortable completing daily living activities. These professionals also focus on brain health and functionality to provide overall healing.

Geriatric physical therapy

Geriatric physical therapy focuses on the needs of aging adults. The conditions that geriatric physical therapists focus on include balance disorders, cancer, osteoporosis, arthritis, and joint replacement. This type of therapy helps reduce pain, restore mobility, and increase your fitness levels. Therapists can help with everything from movement issues to problems speaking or swallowing.

Orthopedic physical therapy

Injuries to the musculoskeletal system are treated with orthopedic physical therapy. Seniors who have orthopedic surgeries are also referred to this type of post-surgical rehab when it is appropriate after healing. The goal of this type of physical therapy is to restore the function of the ligaments, bones, muscles, joints, and tendons. Common reasons for seeing orthopedic rehabilitation therapists are knee and shoulder injuries or surgeries, and torn muscles and other tissues.

Cardiopulmonary physical therapy

If you have Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), or any other pulmonary or cardiac condition, this kind of physical therapy helps with your functional independence and endurance. Other conditions that require cardiopulmonary rehabilitation include heart attacks and pulmonary fibrosis. Cardiac rehab therapists will work closely with other healthcare professionals to develop a therapy plan that will improve lung your function.

The benefits of physical therapy

As an important part of healing, physical rehabilitation improves many things like your strength, mobility, and flexibility. Seniors in particular benefit from this kind of treatment because it helps them reduce the risk of falls and increases quality of life. If you have a chronic condition, a therapist helps reduce your pain and may decrease your need for prescription medication. One top reason why doctors and health professionals prescribe rehab therapy to seniors is to help them be independent for as long as possible.


3 Benefits Of Short-term Rehabilitation Therapy
Posted By: Becky Davis

If you or a loved one have been hospitalized due to a major medical issue, a stroke, or an injury, you may need rehabilitation services. Before you return home, you can take part in many types of rehabilitation including physical therapy, nursing care, or occupational therapy.

Although your doctor will recommend therapy for you, you have a choice about where to complete your recovery. There are many options to choose from, but staying in a short-term rehabilitation center is one of the most convenient. These establishments are designed to help people of all ages regain independence and confidence during the healing process. Here are three great benefits you can receive at a short-term rehabilitation facility.

Your recovery takes place in a comfortable setting

Short-term rehab centers usually have a different atmosphere from the clinical setting of a hospital. Warmth and comfort from caregivers are there to greet you as you recover from your illness, surgery, or medical condition. You can even have a private room, bathroom, and dining options in a quiet and relaxing space. Although you will only stay for a short-time, the staff at professional rehabilitation centers understand that feeling at-home is vital to healing.

You will get personalized care and treatment

When you stay at a short-term rehabilitation center, dedicated and trained staff will provide you with a customized care and treatment plan. Professionals watch your treatment on a daily basis and make adjustments according to your needs. The staff include social workers, therapists, dietitians, and nurses. The support provided by these healthcare workers and their attention to detail can help you regain independence and return home as soon as possible.

Comprehensive care is available

The most advanced programs and equipment are available at short-term rehabilitation centers. An example of how these centers differ from in-home care is the opportunity for older adults to participate in specialized programs. Pet therapy and speech restoration therapy are two types of rehabilitation therapy. Occupational therapy helps seniors regain the ability to practice everyday tasks and activities such as grooming, dressing, cleaning, and cooking. The methods learned in a rehab center can be used at home too.

Rehabilitation therapy at Bivins Pointe in Amarillo, TX

If you are ready to find a short-term rehabilitation center for yourself or a loved one, be sure to do some research first. The facility you choose should be staffed with caring and competent healthcare workers who specialize in senior rehab or rehabilitation after surgery.

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4 Answers To Common Questions About Skilled Nursing Care
Posted By: Becky Davis

A skilled nursing care facility, also known as a nursing home, is a licensed healthcare facility that is regulated and inspected by the Department of Health Services. Short and long-term care is offered at these establishments for those who need rehabilitation or for those who have persistent or serious health issues. The care at these facilities goes beyond what you might get with home care or in an assisted living location.

What services are offered in a skilled nursing facility?

In a skilled nursing facility, trained professionals provide any number of services for their patients. Post-operative care like giving out medications and taking care of wounds is available. Physical therapists work with those who need help building strength and balance. If a person has a stroke, speech therapists are available to help them learn to communicate better. Occupational therapists work in skilled nursing centers as well, helping people become independent again through therapy centered on eating, personal hygiene, and other daily tasks.

Other services provided at skilled nursing care facilities include laboratory testing, pharmaceutical services, and social activities. Transportation, laundry services, and hospice care can also be available at some facilities.

What is assisted living vs. skilled nursing?

You might have a difficult time deciding between assisted living and skilled nursing care. If your loved one needs 24 hour care, a skilled nursing facility may be needed. These facilities provide assistance with medications, personal hygiene, meals, and mobility. The choice of providing this type of care for your loved one in their own home may be a better option.

Assisted living is not as comprehensive as skilled nursing care, although many of the same services are offered. If your loved one does not need a lot of help with daily tasks or medical care, or is able to live mostly independently, this may be your best option. However, there are not typically as many trained medical or therapy staff available.

Is skilled nursing care covered by Medicare?

For a short amount of time, and under certain conditions, Medicare Part A will cover skilled nursing provided in a nursing home. Medicare covered services include a somewhat private room shared with other occupants, physical therapy, occupational therapy, ambulance transportation, and meals. Skilled nursing care, pathology for speech and language, and supplies and medications used while in the facility are also covered.

You should be aware that some hospitals have a "swing bed" agreement for coverage with Medicare and the Department of Health and Human Services. This policy allows the hospital to switch care, providing either a skilled nursing facility level of care or hospital care depending upon when one is needed. Medicare has the same coverage and cost sharing rules for hospitals that have a "swing bed" policy that would be used for skilled nursing facilities.

How do I determine eligibility?

If you or your loved one have Medicare, you have coverage under Part A if you have days left in your benefits period. You also meet qualifications if a doctor has determined that you need daily care under the supervision of rehabilitation therapy staff or skilled nursing staff. If you need a skilled nursing facility for only rehabilitation services, care is considered daily. You are still eligible even if the therapy services are only offered five or six days a week.

You must need and receive the services each day they are offered. You also have eligibility if the nursing services are needed for a hospital related medical condition. If you have a condition that starts in the skilled nursing facility while you are being treated for a condition related to your hospital stay, you are also eligible.

Skilled nursing care at Bivins Pointe

Contact the experienced team at Bivins Pointe in Amarillo, Texas to learn more about our skilled nursing services. Call us at (806) 350-2200 or Contact Us by email for more information. You can also visit us in person at 6600 Killgore Dr in Amarillo, Texas to see how we can help you and your family.


What Is A Typical Day Like In A Senior Rehabilitation Facility?
Posted By: Becky Davis

After a surgery or injury, you or a loved one may require in-patient rehabilitative therapy to assist with the recovery process. If you have never been to therapy in one of these facilities before, you may wonder how a patient lives while staying there. All facilities that specialize in rehabilitative care have the goal of returning the patient to their home as soon as possible. Although a patient's stay at a rehab facility is short, it is beneficial to know what amenities are available and what a typical day there is like.

Amenities offered at rehab facilities

Short-term care facilities often offer patients private rooms to stay and sleep in. Visitors are welcome at any time, so you or your loved one's stay can be as comfortable as possible. Technologies like Smart Bed functions ensure the safety of patients while they are asleep or resting. It is also common for patients to be provided with cable television, an in-room telephone, daily hygiene items, laundry and housekeeping services, and events.

Services provided by senior rehab facilities

Senior rehabilitation facilities provide physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy, skilled nursing, and rehab services. Some even provide access to a gym for outpatient and inpatient exercise and therapy services. Healthy meals are also provided to patients that are tailored to their dietary needs.

The daily life at a senior rehab facility

You or your loved one's care team will establish a schedule for necessary rehabilitation therapies needed throughout each day. The skilled nursing staff will assist patients with grooming and dressing tasks each day. Necessary medications will be dispensed as needed throughout the day, as well. Patients are taken to their therapy appointments with skilled staff, where family members are even encouraged to join their loved ones.

Many rehab facilities offer fun events for their patients. These events include live music, movies, and games such as crosswords, board games, and card games. Activities, crafting, and demonstrations for patients can also be included in these events. You, your loved one, and their care team can arrange a fulfilling schedule that includes both fun events and therapy throughout the day.


Assisted Living Vs. Long-Term Care: Making the Right Choice
Posted By: Becky Davis

When the time comes to choose a care facility for your or a loved one, you may be faced with many questions. It may even be hard to tell what type of care is best suited to your needs. It is important to understand your options when choosing a care provider by doing research and asking questions. You or your loved one may require either long-term or short-term 24-hour care, or may just need help with a few daily living tasks. Here are some tips to help you decide between assisted living or long-term care.

Assisted living facilities

Assisted living care is designed to help a person with their daily living tasks, either in their own home or in a specialized facility. This type of care could include tasks such as administering medication, cooking meals, performing daily hygiene tasks, and more. Assisted living is a good option for mostly independent people who do not need medical care or supervision throughout the day. If you or your loved one are able to live mostly alone, and just need help with some daily tasks, this is a good option for you. Be sure to discuss the safety risks if you will be receiving in-home care. If you think falls or injuries may be likely, then consider discussing long-term care options as well.

Long-term care facilities

Long-term care facilities, or nursing homes, are meant for patients who need 24 hour care or medical supervision. If you or your loved one have cognitive disorders, physical disabilities, or a prolonged or degenerative illness or disease, this may be the best option for you. Long-term care facilities can offer skilled nursing care and medical assistance, along with many amenities and social opportunities. Skilled staff will help patients with daily living tasks, monitoring medical conditions, and safety needs.

Making a choice between assisted living and long-term care

Once you have discussed all of your medical and safety needs with a doctor, you can decide which care option would be best for you. Before choosing a facility, do thorough research and look for reviews from current and prior patients and their family members. You can do this by looking on the internet and social media. Call the facilities you are interested in and schedule a tour so that you can see what amenities are available. You should also ask to meet the staff and about their skills and credentials. Remember, you should never be afraid to ask questions. Doing these things will help you to choose the best facility for you or your loved one, whether you need assisted living or long-term care


3 Frequently Asked Questions About Skilled Nursing Facilities
Posted By: Becky Davis