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​Is Assisted Living the Right Choice?

Terry Schwartz and Ethel Yanowitch, assisted living testimonialFor seniors and their families, assisted living can offer the ideal solution when extra help is needed for life’s daily activities.

Terry Schwartz of North Huntingdon was dogged in her search for the perfect living facility for her mother, Ethel Yanowitch. “For six years, Mom lived with our family, so I wanted a place that truly felt like home — but where she could also get the increased care and supervision she needed,” says Terry.

After visiting 10 different senior care facilities, she chose UPMC Senior Communities’ Weatherwood Manor in Greensburg. Mrs. Yanowitch, 90, has been a resident there for two years and, Terry says, “It has exceeded our expectations in every way. Mom loves it there.”

For Terry and her mother, assisted living represents the “best of both worlds.” It offers an increased level of services while encouraging and supporting residents to be as independent as possible through activities and socialization.

UPMC Senior Communities offers assisted living options at:

“Assisted living is tailored for seniors who need help with daily living activities, such as dressing, grooming, walking, and taking medications — but who don’t require skilled nursing care,” explains Deborah Brodine, president of UPMC Senior Communities and Community Provider Services.

Each UPMC facility provides on-site nursing care and medication management. All residents have spacious apartments with private baths and kitchenettes. Three restaurant-style meals are served daily.

Before moving into a UPMC Senior Communities assisted living facility, residents are carefully assessed and individual care plans are created for them. “Because our health and lifestyle needs change as we age, residents also receive regular assessments to ensure they’re receiving the best possible care,” she adds.

Understanding Assisted Living

Personal care homes and assisted living facilities once meant the same thing in Pennsylvania — but that’s no longer the case.

Pennsylvania now distinguishes the types of basic services that can be provided by personal care and assisted living residences. One of the fundamental differences is that assisted living facilities must provide health care services that will enable the residents to “age in place” as their health declines and their care needs change.

Weatherwood Manor recently received licensure as an assisted living facility under new state guidelines. UPMC Senior Communities’ Cumberland Crossing Manor, Seneca Manor, and Strabane Woods also are converting from personal care to assisted living licenses.

“Assisted living community licensure is an expression of UPMC Senior Communities’ commitment to offering older adults and their families the kind of continuing care they need and depend on to safely and confidently age in place,” says Ms. Brodine.

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