Located in the North County region of San Diego, just about 30 miles north of downtown San Diego, lies a moderately-sized town called Escondido. The city, which was incorporated in 1888, is one of the oldest cities in the county. home to roughly a hundred and fifty thousand people, according to a census done in 2017, Escondido offers beautiful, temperate year-round weather, sunny skies, and easy access to some of California's most breathtaking natural vistas.
The city itself is located in a shallow valley and is surrounded by breathtaking Rocky Hills. Along with a wide variety of fun activities for the whole family and unique points of interest, Escondido is home to numerous senior living communities, including assisted living facilities. Assisted living facilities in Escondido or subject to the licensing regulations set forth by the state of California, designed to guarantee that senior living residences provide personal care services and amenities according to their residents’ individual needs.
This guide will discuss California's regulations for assisted living communities so families who are considering retiring in Escondido will know what to expect before they tore or commit to a residence.
Escondido assisted living
In California, all assisted living communities, or residential Care Facilities as they are known throughout the state, are licensed by the Department of Social Services, Community Care Licensing Division. The state does not offer separate categories of licensing for adult foster care, and as of 2015 California enacted a handful of laws that have impacted the operation of facilities constructed before those dates. However, some existing regulations have not yet been amended to reflect these recent changes, although the new laws take precedence over existing guidelines.
While assisted living is commonly used interchangeably with other terms for long-term care, these types of communities are known as residential care facilities for the elderly in California.
To be defined as a residential care facility for the elderly, a residence must provide housing arrangements at a site where at three-quarters of the population (or more) are at least 60 years of age.
Additionally, residential care facilities for the elderly must provide varying levels of care and oversight to Residence as agreed upon at the time of their admission. If a person's ongoing well-being assessments show that they need changes to their service plan, their community must adjust their care routine accordingly.
Residential care facilities for the elderly in California may house residents under the age of 60, but their needs must be compatible with those of other residents. Each community’s maximum number of occupants is determined by California's licensing agency, which determines the limit based on each communities services, whether or not family members of the communities owner administrator will reside on site, the building's features, the types of staff that are available.
Residential care facilities for the elderly are permitted to admit residents with dementia or Alzheimer's diagnosis, provided they meet the state's special requirements for these individuals. According to California's licensing agency, a community must provide annual medical assessments, physical safety supports, adequate supervision, and appropriate activity programs if they plan to house residents with Alzheimer's, Dementia, or other memory loss conditions.
Assisted Living Vs. Other Types of Long-Term Care in Escondido
Assisted living is popular among retiring families and individuals for the many personal care services and amenities that it provides, but it isn't the right choice for everyone. In fact, there are several other types of long-term care communities that may be more appropriate for some individuals, depending on their care needs and their personal preferences.
In California, independent and assisted living communities are two distinctly different types of residences. Assisted living communities provide personal care services that assist residents with their activities of daily living on an ongoing basis, what independent living communities focus more on providing a maintenance-free lifestyle, complete with convenient amenities that help residents live their lives to the fullest.
Both types of communities offer similar amenities, like housekeeping, transportation, on-site meals, and more, but independent living residences do not provide the same level of care as an assisted living. If a person needs assistance with their activities of daily living regularly, and an independent living community may not provide adequate enough help for them to maintain their well-being.
However, independent living may be a more appropriate choice than assisted living when individuals or families want the benefits of community-based care, but do not require ongoing personal care services. At an independent living community, residents may request assistance whenever they need it, but they do not have an in-depth service plan that details their care routine the same way as they would at a residential care facility for the elderly. For this reason, independent living is commonly less expensive than assisted living, offering a more affordable community-based care for individuals who do not need the services provided at a residential care facility for the elderly.
Nursing homes offer an entirely different level of care than assisted and independent living communities, providing skilled nursing care according to each resident's individual needs. At a nursing home, the staff is more readily equipped to treat residents with ongoing health conditions, like chronic illnesses and injuries. Assisted living may be able to help with intermittent nursing services, but they are not equipped to provide ongoing medical attention. Retiring individuals who need continuous oversight and assistance from medical professionals may consider a nursing home instead of a residential care facility so they can receive adequate services for their healthcare needs.
It's important for families to discuss the different types of long-term care with their physician and administrators at prospective residential care communities so they can make the right choice regarding their retirement.
Assisted Living Services and Amenities in Escondido, California
In California, the Department of Social Services, Community Care Licensing Division requires Residential Care Facilities to provide a handful of basic services and amenities so that they may meet each resident’s individual care needs. Services and amenities may vary between communities, but they must fall in line with the state's regulations for the community to continue providing care.
Along with room and board, residential care facilities for the elderly must provide two types of services for their residents:
Basic care, which encompasses personal care, assistance with activities of daily living, supervision, access to planned activities, like social events, and arrangements so residents can make it to and from medical and dental appointments.
Care and supervision, which includes assistance with activities of daily living like dressing, taking care of personal hygiene, bathing, toileting, assistance with self-administered medications, and monitoring for each residents food intake, including guidance for those with special diets.
Residential care facilities for the elderly must provide service planning for their residents so that they may provide care according to each individual's personal needs. Before a person may be admitted to an assisted living community in California, they must go through a pre-admission appraisal to evaluate their functional capacity, which is measured by their ability to perform activities of daily living. The pre-admission assessment will also take into account a person's mental condition, and additional social factors to determine if they are a good fit for the community.
Only skilled medical professionals who are acting within the scope of their practice may administer medications to assisted living residents in California. Unlicensed staff are permitted to assist residents with the self-administration of their medications, but may not directly administer them.
If a community chooses to serve meals on site, they must provide at least three meals per day for each resident plus snacks in between. some communities offer elective meal services, which must guarantee that all residents who participate in the meal service have access to an adequate amount of food for their daily intake requirements.
All meals at assisted living communities must feature an appropriate variety of foods, which are prepared with consideration to each resident’s religious background and their dietary preferences. If a person needs a modified diet as prescribed by a physician, their Community must adjust their meals accordingly.
Although not required, many residential care facilities for the elderly provide resort-style amenities above and beyond those required by the state to create an all-in-one living experience for residents. At resort-style communities, residents may enjoy amenities like the following although they vary by location:
Community living areas
Arts and craft rooms
Fitness centers and gyms
Individuals or family should contact potential assisted living communities before applying to learn more about which services and amenities they offer on-site.
Assisted Living Apartments in Escondido, California
Residential care facilities for the elderly in California are not required to provide private apartments for their residents. Residents may have single-occupancy rooms or share a double occupancy room with another resident. Communities must provide at least one toilet and one sink for every 6 residents, and one bathtub or shower for every 10 residents. If the community has facility dwelling staff, they must count these individuals when they consider these regulations.
Additionally, assisted living apartments in Escondido are subject to different regulations if the community is served through the Medicaid assisted living waiver program. Communities that are contracted with Medicaid must provide private occupancy rooms for each resident, only allowing shared occupancy when two residents choose to live together; if residents do not express explicit consent to share an apartment, their communities may not assign them a roommate.
Communities that contract with Medicaid must also provide kitchen areas in their assisted living apartments, which must be equipped with a refrigerator and at least one cooking appliance like a stove or microwave.
Things to Do in Escondido California
Located just 30 miles north of downtown San Diego, there's plenty to do in and around the Escondido area. What are the most popular destinations is the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, one of the largest attractions of its kind in the world. The zoo, previously known as the San Diego wild animal park, spans more than 1,800 acres in the scenic San Pasqual Valley region of San Diego. The zoo is famous for its seemingly limitless exhibits, which include hundreds of unique species from throughout the world. residence of Escondido in the San Diego area must take a trip to the zoo at least once for the one-of-a-kind wildlife experience.
Looking for a place to take in all of California's natural beauty? The Elfin Forest Recreational Reserve is an excellent spot to spend some quality time in nature, featuring thousands of native plants, spacious picnic areas, beautiful hiking trails, biking opportunities, and equestrian trails. The reserve is an excellent place to spend a warm California day, surrounded by the area’s scenic views.
Kit Carson Park is another popular outdoor activity in the San Diego area, offering many hiking trails, several ponds, sports fields, in a 5-acre arbortorium. The park itself spends more than 285 acres of Municipal land in Escondido and is named after Kit Carson, the famous explorer who guided Captain John C Fremont through the Sierra Nevada mountains during they're famous exploration expedition.
Funding Assisted Living in Escondido California
Paying for assisted living can feel like a challenge as families approach retirement, but it doesn't have to be. In fact, there are several opportunities available to help families offset the cost of long-term care, including Medicaid waiver programs, veterans benefits, and long-term care insurance policies.
In recent years, long-term care insurance has grown in popularity as an effective way to pay for assisted living. By purchasing long-term care insurance far enough in advance, families can save a significant amount of money when it comes time to pay for In recent years, long-term care insurance has grown in popularity as an effective way to pay for assisted living. By purchasing long-term care insurance before retiring, families can save significant amounts of money when they pay for residential care. It's common practice for assisted living communities to accept long-term care insurance, and it's becoming even more popular as more people use it as a method to pay for their retirement arrangements.
However, it's important for retiring individuals to understand that long-term care insurance cost less the younger a person is when they buy it. Typically, a person can secure lower monthly premiums for long-term care insurance if they purchased it before they approached retirement age. In some cases, long-term care insurance may not be a financially viable option because of how much the premiums can increase the closer a person is to retiring
If an individual or a family is financially eligible, they may qualify for assistance to pay for long-term care through the Medi-Cal assisted living waiver program. The program exists to help families with financial need all set the cost of long-term care when they require assistance from another person to complete their activities of daily living.
The Medi-Cal assisted living waiver program is only available to those who financially qualify for standard Medicaid benefits, and is limited to individuals who need a nursing home level of care. The waiver is designed to give those who may otherwise move into a nursing home and opportunity to receive equally adequate help at a community-based care facility. the waiver program is open to residents throughout California, an applicant must qualify for nursing facility care.
Additionally, the Department of Veterans Affairs offers special benefits for those who served in the United States armed forces. If a person served in the United States military and was not dishonorably discharged, they may qualify for a monthly cash benefit to offset the cost of long-term care. This benefit, known as aid and attendance, is reserved for those who need help with their activities of daily living, and who are financially eligible for a monthly pension through the Department of Veterans Affairs. The benefit is paid out as a cash award each month, which recipients may use to pay for long-term care however they see fit.