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Affinity Health Tackles The Big Question: Is It Time To Put My Elderly Parents In A Nursing Home?

Affinity Health, leading providers of affordable medical cover, discuss trending reasons for placing elderly parents in nursing homes.


Whether or not to place a parent in a nursing home is often one of the most difficult decisions you might ever have to make. Some of us can raise our family, work full-time, care for ourselves, and offer full-time, hands-on care to our elderly parents. Meanwhile, others find themselves increasingly spread thin. As a result, the only other option remaining is to start looking at nursing homes to care for your elderly parents.


“Before you conjure images of dungeon-like institutes, rest assured that there are many wonderful nursing homes for seniors available in South Africa,” says Murray Hewlett, CEO of Affinity Health. “Nursing homes have numerous advantages. Seniors receive the attention, supervision, and social engagement that they require to thrive.”

When Would a Nursing Home Be a Good Option?

There are many reasons why placing a parent in a nursing home might be the best option.


The Top 5 Reasons include:

They are incapable of self-care:

If your parents cannot care for themselves (eat, bathe, or do other daily tasks), this is a clear indication that they may require assisted living services.

You’re unable to cope:

When you are responsible for an ageing parent on your own, you may feel miserable, tired, and even resentful. These emotions may rub off on your elderly parents, aggravating them even more. You won’t be able to help them if you’re physically and mentally exhausted all the time.

Professional medical help is necessary: 

Many people decide that their parents must go to a nursing home to meet their medical requirements. If your parents are disabled, frail, suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s, or any other illness, this can easily entail up to two hours or more of nursing care per day.

You live far away from them:

While you might be able to travel occasionally and assist your elderly parents, you may not be able to do so for long periods if you don’t live in the same city, state, or country. Jobs and other responsibilities may prevent you from quitting your job or putting your career on hold indefinitely.

You’ve exhausted your options:

While at-home care is sometimes preferable to nursing home care, it is not always enough. A nursing home may be the only suitable option.

7 Pointers to Assist You & Your Parents

Affinity Health has seven suggestions to assist you in locating the best nursing home for your parents:

  1. Determine what your parents require and what your family can afford.
  2. If your parents are willing, include them in the decision-making process.
  3. Confirm if a facility is a good social fit for your parents. If your parents enjoy social activities, for example, choose a home that encourages group activities to stimulate senses and build friendships.
  4. Before enrolling your parents, conduct your own onsite assessment of any facility. Visit multiple times, on different days, and at different times.
  5. Look into the nursing home’s ratings. Compare reviews on different websites, and if possible, speak to the members within the nursing home.
  6. Carefully read the contract with the facility. It’s a good idea to go over it numerous times to avoid any unexpected financial obligations in the future. You might wish to have it reviewed by an attorney, accountant, or financial advisor as well.
  7. Most importantly, plan ahead. Before you’re in a crisis, start looking at your options and opportunities. This way, when the time comes, you’ll be confident that you’ve chosen the best – and most suitable – nursing home for your parents.


Learn More: A Guide to Medical Cover for Pensioners

About Affinity Health

Affinity Health is South Africa’s leading provider of health insurance, offering you a range of options at affordable rates including access to the widest national provider network. We understand the importance of having medical insurance that meets your needs, your budget, and your lifestyle. Our range of healthcare products are designed to protect you and your family when it matters the most. We strive to give our clients peace of mind and the highest standard of service at all times. For more information, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


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