This blog has been adapted from an article originally published in Wings Around Town – by Bradley Funeral Homes
What do a 92-year-old retired school teacher in Union County, a 74-year-old retired Bell Labs mathematician and his wife of 40 years from Morris County, and an 81-year-old recreational pilot from Hunterdon County all have in common? They are all part of a growing culture change amongst seniors in America to “age in place” – not in a Continuing Care Retirement Community or Assisted Living facility but rather, in their own home.
Though their lifestyles and personal histories are vastly different, all four people enrolled as Members of the Fellowship Freedom Plans program, a long term care protection plan known as a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) “without walls”. Certified by the Department of Community Affairs; the same state agency that regulates all CCRCs throughout the state and launched in September 2011, the program has been embraced by those who prefer to remain in their own home rather than move into a traditional residential retirement community.
The Fellowship Freedom Plans program is an affordable, comprehensive alternative to long-term care insurance. The focus of the program is on quality health care services, advocacy, and proactive care coordination as well as the preservation of one’s assets and legacy. It gives active and independent seniors the opportunity to stay in their own home while giving their loved ones peace of mind knowing that their designated personal care coordinator is available to Members 24 hours a day, 7days a week. With the cost of health care services and private-pay rates on the rise, the Fellowship Freedom Plans program provides financial protection against these increases at a fraction of the cost of paying for care services separately.
Unlike long-term care insurance, the Fellowship Freedom Plans program does not have elimination or waiting periods, no maximum benefit periods or policy limits, and no claim or reimbursement forms to fill out. Whether it is a minor setback or a more complicated illness, all services begin as soon as you need them and can be provided on a temporary or permanent basis – even if you require 24/7 live-in assistance. For those who wish to fill in the gap of their long-term care insurance policy or who are comfortable sharing in future expenses, there are several plan options to choose from. All plans provide lifetime coverage.
The program provides comprehensive continuum care of services such as care coordination, companions, homemakers, Certified Home Health Aides, live-in assistance, assisted living and nursing home level of care for Members experiencing deficiencies in their Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). Ancillary services such as an emergency response system, home safety inspection, transportation, social and wellness programs, adult daycare, and concierge services are also included at no additional cost.
When services are required by a Member, the Personal Care Coordinator and the Care Coordination Team develop a personalized care plan, schedule and deliver services normally received in a residential retirement community, assisted living or nursing home, all in the comfort of one’s home.
The “at home” model has been around for over 20 years with over two dozen successful programs currently operating throughout the United States. Members of the Fellowship Freedom Plans program must be between the ages of 50 and 85 years to participate. Though tailored to seniors, the program is valued by their adult children and families. Most adult children want to honor and take care of their parents or grandparents, most are busy with their own family and career obligations and are too busy to care for them on a daily basis. Even if time is not a factor, it can be emotionally draining. The Fellowship Freedom Plans program removes that burden and provides reassurance not only to our Members but to the ones they love.
Jennifer Kohan is the Director of Membership Development of Fellowship Freedom Plans for Fellowship Senior Living. Fellowship Freedom Plans are designed to help you stay in your home. Combining the financial protection of long-term care insurance with comprehensive care coordination, up to and including 24/7 care. Jennifer can be reached at 908.580.3886 or JKohan@FellowshipSL.org.