Glossary of Assisted Living Terms

Acute Care - A pattern of health care in which a patient is treated for an acute (immediate and severe) episode of illness; for the subsequent treatment of injuries related to an accident or other trauma; or during recovery from surgery. Acute care is usually delivered in a hospital setting by specialized personnel using complex and sophisticated technical equipment and materials. Unlike chronic care, acute care is usually only delivered over a short time span of 30 days or less. 

Advanced Directives - An advance directive is a broad category of legal instructions you may set up for your healthcare. Types of advanced directives: Living Will, durable power of attorney, DNR, Organ Donor Form.

AoB or Assignment of Benefits - When a covered person authorizes his or her health benefits plan to directly pay a health care provider for covered services. Behavioral Health Treatment of mental health and/or substance abuse disorders .

Care Management – A free service from Talem Home Care & Placement Services Care management is a collaborative process of assessment, planning, facilitation, care coordination, evaluation, and advocacy for options and services to meet an individual’s and family’s comprehensive needs through communication and available resources to promote quality, cost-effective outcomes.

Case Management - Similar to Care management, but more clinical in nature, case management is usually done by an RN or SW.

Certification Period - 60 days of skilled nursing care for home health care. Every patient is -re-evaluated at the end of each certification (cert.) period.

Chronic Care - Long term care of individuals with long standing, persistent diseases or conditions. It includes care specific to the problem as well as other measures to encourage self-care, to promote health, and to prevent loss of function. 

Continuity of Care - The degree, to which the care of a patient from the onset of illness until its completion is continuous, that is without interruption. 

Continuum of Care - Clinical services provided during a single inpatient hospitalization or for multiple conditions over a lifetime. It provides a basis for evaluating quality, cost, and utilization over the long term.

Custodial Care Non-Medical, Personal Care - Discharge Planning A procedure where aftercare services are determined prior to discharge from the inpatient facility. Discharge planning is usually begun upon admission to the facility. 

Elimination Period or Waiting Period - The period a client must private pay before an insurance company will start to pay.

EOB (Explanation of Benefits) - A document typically provided to an insured and a provider after services are rendered. The document is generally sent by the claim-paying party and provides a summary of how a claim was paid based on the benefit plan.

Episode of care - All treatment rendered in a specified time frame for a specific disease.

Eval. or Evaluation - Head to toe assessment performed by and RN to determine eligibility and plan of care for a home health patient.

Exacerbation - A worsening or severe "flare" History.

Five Wishes - A form recognized by most states, used to identify advanced directives.

Foley Catheter - Latex tubing entering the bladder via the urethra to drain urine.

Frequency - The schedule that a nurse, caregiver(PCW) and/or therapist will visit a patient. Inhaler Medical device used for delivering medication into the body via the lungs.

Living Will - A living will is a document that falls into the category of advance directives. Therefore, a living will is a type of advance directive. It outlines the medical care or wishes someone may have, even if the wishes result in death.

Nebulizer - A machine that is used to deliver medication in the form of a mist.

Palliative Care - Palliative care is specialized medical care for people with serious illnesses. This type of care is focused on providing patients with relief from the symptoms, pain, and stress of a serious illness - whatever the diagnosis.

Power of Attorney (Durable POA) - 2 types: Financial & Medical. Financial manages someones money and finance, Medical has the power to make medical decision. Both of which only takes place once some is deem incapacitated. Either due to being unconscious or having a form of Dementia. If they have dementia, a court must deem the person to be incapacitated.

Primary Care Provider (PCP) - This term almost always refers to doctors, nurse practitioners or physician assistants who provide routine care and  preventive care (before people are sick). PCPs diagnose and treat common medical problems, determine how urgent these problems are, and may refer patients to other specialists if needed. PCPs practice in the community, not a hospital or other healthcare facility. Some PCP’s follow their patients into the hospital while others do not and a “hospitalist” is assigned to the patient who will likely communicate with your PCP while you’re in the hospital.

Re-Certification - When a patient continues to meet criteria, and is continued HH services.