North Dakota Continuing Care Retirement Communities

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Continuing Care Retirement Communities in North Dakota

Continuing care retirement communities have been developed to service the needs of our aging population. Offering a continuum of care, they are meant for senior adults who still exhibit a good state of health, looking to maintain an independent lifestyle. These life care communities provide several care levels within the same setting, including independent living, assisted living, skilled rehabilitation care, and memory care.

If you want to apply for a spot in one of these senior living communities in ND, the first thing you should know that there is an age requirement to be met. Usually, CCRCs accept people who are over 62, but you might find some communities with a lower requirement, such as 55. Second, you must be able to cover the entrance fee, which is substantial. Your income must be high enough to cover the monthly fees (healthcare and personal assistance).

In North Dakota, there are 22 continuing care retirement communities. These can be found in the following locations: West Fargo, Dilworth, Moorhead, Hawley, Fargo, and Lake Park. All of these communities welcome senior adults who no longer want to deal with house chores and property ownership. Prospective residents can choose between different types of contracts, but the most coveted is the life care contract, which is not offered in all CCRCs. This type of contract allows the resident to benefit from lifetime care, regardless of how his/her health needs or financial situation might change.

Continuing Care Retirement Communities in North Dakota - financing and costs

Your financial independence plays the most influence on the decision to move into a CCRC. With entrance fees reaching significant sums nowadays, you have to plan ahead and make sure you have the necessary funds for the move. It is also important to consider your monthly income and whether this will be enough to cover the respective monthly fees.

Many senior adults are tired of having to look after a big property, so they prefer to sell their home and rely on the respective funds to cover the entrance fee. Others fall back on the retirement funds or they resort to various savings or assets. No matter how you decide to finance your application, keep in mind that there are non-profit CCRCs, where the respective fees might be lower.

North Dakota is more expensive than its neighboring states, Montana and Minnesota, with entrance fees varying between $160,000 and $600,000. The monthly fees vary between $2,500 and $5,400 – these fees are similar to the ones in the above-mentioned states. By comparison, the national average is of $2,500.

Continuing Care Retirement Communities in North Dakota - care levels and services

As it was mentioned at the beginning of the article, CCRCs offer several different levels of care. With independent living, residents have the freedom to live on their own, with permanent and immediate access to a wide range of services and amenities. If the situation changes and assistance with daily living activities becomes necessary, they can transition to assisted living.

Residents with complex healthcare needs can opt for the skilled nursing care, which can include short or long-term rehabilitation. Those who have been diagnosed with deteriorating conditions, such as Alzheimer's disease, can transition to memory care. It is worth mentioning that transitions can be temporary or permanent, depending on how severe the situation is. Sometimes, residents recover fully, returning to independent living.

Transitions are decided in accordance to the needs of the resident, both in terms of healthcare and personal assistance. The staff undertakes regular evaluations to determine the need of transitions, assessing not only one's health status but also the level of independence and risk of injury. In recommending a transition, doctors will consider if the respective resident can function on his/her own and how difficult daily living activities have become. For instance, some senior adults may no longer be able to feed, bathe or dress on their own.

All North Dakota CCRCs offer a basic range of services, including meal plans, general maintenance and housekeeping, non-stop security, emergency call system for major health events, Internet, cable, telephone, linen and laundry service, transportation to/from appointments, guest admission. Some communities offer additional services, and taking a virtual tour of the respective CCRC might help you form an idea about what to expect.

CCRC in North Dakota - amenities and options

Upon taking a virtual tour of a CCRC, you will most likely notice that residents can choose between different living options. Depending on their budget, they can opt for a one or two-bedroom apartment, a cottage or a townhouse. The latter are known as garden homes and they are definitely more expensive, so the financial implications should be considered.

Regardless of the chosen property, you have the same access to services and amenities, and you can choose to live together with your spouse. Please note that couples who live together have to pay an additional amount for the respective unit. Pet-friendly CCRCs clearly mention this policy, so you should check the contract before committing to anything.

What kind of amenities do CCRCs have? These can include: library, computer and activity room, billiard room, hair salon, hiking and walking trails, swimming pool, tennis court, golf course, fitness and wellness center, social clubs, weekly religious service, café and fine dining restaurants, pharmacy. Residents who suffer from dementia can take guided walks, work on their memory and cognitive skills in the learning center, or attend various therapies.

What are some positives and negatives of moving into a CCRC in North Dakota?

North Dakota CCRCs are modern and equipped with everything necessary for a comfortable style of living. They offer top-notch healthcare and personal assistance, allowing residents to transition to higher levels of care. Here are some additional pros and cons for you to remember.

Pros of moving to a CCRC in ND

Different levels of care available within the same community/setting

Possibility to transition to a higher level of care without delay

Personal assistance offered with daily living activities

Expert services and assistance for those who suffer from Alzheimer's disease

Amenities cater to physical fitness and mental alertness

Cons of moving to a CCRC in ND

Substantial fees can be hard to cover on a low/medium-level income

Some of these communities are located in isolated areas

Residents can feel disconnected from the "real world"

Adaptation period can extend indefinitely, leading to depression and anxiety

Some restrictions might impose on the freedom one was used to

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