There is often an intermediate time in a senior's life when they need some health care and assistance, yet they don't fully need to be in a skilled care nursing home. Finding the right care options in this time can be challenging, Here are some potential solutions.
Home Care Aides
If your loved one is set on continuing to live by herself, then it may be possible to arrange this while still getting health care in-home. Many types of specialists offer services inside the home. Skilled nursing is available for in-home care, as are physical therapists and rehabilitation specialists. Basically any health service that doesn't have a lot of equipment needs is viable for in-home care.
This may not work if the health care needs become intensive and time consuming for medical professionals; this would indicate that your loved one should be placed under greater supervision by nurses and trained physicians. If there is something that makes it dangerous for your loved one to continue living alone, such as a memory-related issues or frequent falls and emergencies, your health care providers will be some of the first to point this out.
Assisted living facilities are practically designed for the scenario where a senior doesn't want to fully give up control to a nursing home facility, yet they do need some assistance. Assisted living communities may house medical professionals who can provide for daily medical needs and monitor a loved one's health. They come with the added benefit of offering many senior services and a support network to your loved one. Memory care is available at some facilities as a preventative measure for cognitive health and physical safety.
Be sure to check with your individual assisted living center, since they can vary greatly in the amount of medical care that they offer. But many specialists have working relationships with assisted living facilities, since that's where many of their patients will tend to reside.
Visit sites like http://www.cedarcommunity.org to learn about communities that allow seniors varying levels of independence and care.
Finally, nursing homes should be something to keep on the table. They can provide a level of care and safety that many less intensive care programs cannot. If you fear that your loved one may injure himself if left alone, or that they need more care than they can admit, it might be wise to speak with a nursing home representative to see how you can portray a nursing home move in a positive light for your loved one.