Is Assisted Living Or A Nursing Home The Right Choice?

Whether it’s for you or a loved one, deciding which long-term care option is best can be a difficult and daunting decision. This stems mostly from the fact that there are an array of options available, each with its own benefits. The one thing you need to remember when considering long-term care is figuring out what level of care is needed. 

There are many factors to consider when it comes to assisted living and nursing homes. Things like cost, insurance, meals, living spaces, and amenities are all elements that will impact the quality of your (or a loved ones) stay. To simplify the details, we’ll analyze them below to ensure you feel confident in choosing Bay Vista Assisted Living as your final choice in long-term care.

Nursing Home vs Assisted Living: The Basics

To understand the difference between nursing homes and assisted living facilities, we need to understand the basics. As mentioned before, choosing the right place is determined by what level of care is needed. 

A nursing home is what we all know and are familiar with in the world of long-term care. They are more medical environments than residential because of the care they provide. Also called skilled nursing facilities, they provide medical care to residents who have serious health conditions. 

On the other hand, think of assisted living facilities as more residential than medical. Usually residents here have manageable health conditions. These facilities are best for seniors who are searching for a sense of community. While residents do have access to medical care, it is limited compared to nursing homes. Rather than having a 24-hour skilled nursing staff, assisted living facilities might have transportation options to take seniors to their doctors appointments. 

Overall, the main difference between a nursing home and an assisted living facility is the level of care required. Those who have more serious medical conditions such as dementia, might be best served in a nursing home. Others who are fairly healthy but might need some assistance with daily living activities might like an assisted living facility better. 

Cost, Amenities, Insurance, and Living Space

Now that the basics are covered, it’s important to look at the other factors that can influence your decision on choosing a long-term care facility. 


For some, cost can be the biggest factor when choosing between an assisted living facility or a nursing home. The American Health Care Association reported that the annual cost of a semi-private room in a nursing home is about $89,000 if you’re paying out of pocket. The cost of assisted living in these same terms is $48,000, almost more than half. 


Fornatuely, there is not a one size fits all price tag when paying for long-term care because it varies not only by level of care, but also by state and what your insurance covers if you have it. In a nutshell, medicare does not cover most fees associated with nursing homes and other skilled nursing facilities. Coverage is even less for those who are seeking an assisted living facility. Either way, benefits are specific to what kind of plan you have so it’s always best to check with each facility and your insurance company before you make a final decision. 

Medicaid does cover some aspects of an assisted living facility, but this is when your location depends on what is covered. Each state has different guidelines and requirements that must be met before they will pay for any fees. Another thing to note, is that some policies will only cover care within a nursing home and others will only for an assisted living facility or at home care. 

Regardless it’s important to research and ask questions concerning insurance while touring the facilities you or a loved one might be interested in. 

Amenities and Living Space

Because assisted living tends to be for those who are in fairly good health, there are more options for recreational activities. The attractiveness of a facility for many seniors is found in what they can do there. A fitness center, gardens, a swimming pool, a spa, and therapy services are all amenities that can be offered. Specifically for Bay Vista Assisted Living, many of our seniors enjoy our activity programs because it allows them to grow their social community. 

Nursing homes offer less recreational activities than assisted living because residents have limited mobility skills and more severe health conditions. However, that doesn’t mean they have nothing to offer. Their amenities could be more social based rather than physical, offering more activities in a class-like setting such as painting or cooking. 

Living spaces also vary between the two. Assisted living rooms are more apartment style and residents share a kitchen and/or bathroom. Nursing homes have more private or suite style bedrooms. Seniors share a common or dining area. 

Nursing Home vs Assisted Living: Overview

Long-term care options have grown over the years as well as their benefits. After considering the living space, what amenities are available, insurance coverage and the cost, you might be a step closer to deciding which option is best for you. 

If you or a loved one are seeking more social interaction and amenities, are in fairly good health, and need little assistance performing daily activities then assisted living might be the best choice. These facilities offer great exposure to other seniors and activities that can make their stay more enjoyable. Assisted living, on average, is also cheaper than a nursing home.

However, if you or a loved one have a higher level of care and limited mobility than a nursing home might be your best option. With access to 24-hour skilled nursing and doctors on call, there is no doubt that you are in good hands at all times. 

Our Promise To You

At Bay Vista Assisted Living in Long Beach, NY  we pride ourselves on seeing our residents as people and strive to make every day new and exciting. We meet them where they are and as their needs change so do we, to adapt to every level of assistance. The cost of assisted living can be stressful for some, and that’s why we also value communication to ensure our residents and their families understand exactly what we have to offer. For more information about our services or to view a virtual tour, visit our website!


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