Last month, The Washington Post published an article which revealed that many Americans are in denial when it comes to thinking about the long-term care services and supports they will need as they age. The Post reports that according to a recent poll, two thirds of people over the age of 40 have done little if any planning for elderhood. In fact, 3 in 10 adults in this age group prefer not to think about aging at all.
Despite widespread denial, the facts remain clear; we will all age and advanced planning for long-term care needs are necessary. The article confirms this stating, “Government figures show nearly 7 in 10 Americans will need long-term care at some point after they reach age 65, whether it’s from a relative, a home health aide, assisted living or a nursing home. On average, they’ll need that care for three years.”
In a society where traditional models of long-term care can feel more like impersonal hospitals than real homes, it is understandable that Americans reject the need to think about the care they will need as they age.
Luckily, new models of long-term care like THE GREEN HOUSE® Project, encourage acceptance of aging as a stage of late-life development that is characterized by growth, autonomy and purposeful living. Based on the three core values of Meaningful Life, Empowered Staff and Real Home, Green House homes are designed as a sanctuary where elders thrive and find meaning in late life.
Unlike a traditional nursing home model, 10-12 elders live in a Green House home and they enjoy the aspects of a real home including, private rooms, home-cooked meals and an easy to navigate design. The direct care staff, known as Shahbazim, are empowered as a self-managed work team, providing care in a flattened organizational hierarchy. Finally, meaningful life is considered every person’s right in the Green House home and choice, control, autonomy and close relationships are just some of the ways that this is achieved.
There are 146 Green House homes open in 23 states with an additional 123 in development. Click here to find a Green House home near you!