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What is convalescent care?

Fonthill House, St Albans, Hertfordshire

Recovering from an illness, operation or injury isn’t always as straightforward as allowing it to simply run its course. For those who are vulnerable or need more support during recovery, convalescent care can be a great option, helping you to get back on your feet and regain independence.

What is convalescent care?

Convalescent care is a type of short-term support provided by skilled carers within the comfort of your own home or at a specialised care home that offers convalescent stays. It’s designed for those who are recovering from an illness, operation or injury. This type of care aims to help individuals regain their independence and return to normal life without the need for extra support. 

Whether at home or in a care home, convalescent care involves providing medicines, therapeutic services, assistance with daily tasks and emotional support. Each individual case will have a tailor-made plan of care and recovery, however, some key aspects convalescent care covers include:

  • Counselling
  • Physical therapy
  • Speech therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Meals
  • Companionship
  • Administering medication 
  • Laundry
  • Personal care

Whether your end goals are physical or emotional, convalescent care helps you to get there fast and, most importantly, not alone.

Who is convalescent care suitable for?

Convalescent care is aimed at people who need temporary, short-term care to return to full health and independence without the need for further support. This level of care is for individuals who have the ability to recover from whatever illness or injury required additional support. For example, if someone recently underwent surgery, they might need convalescent care until they’re fully recovered from the operation and ready to return to normal life and activities. Here are some examples of when convalescent care may be required:

  • After a fall
  • For post-surgery recovery
  • Following a stroke
  • For an acute illness

How long is convalescent care provided for?

The aim of convalescent care is to help you recover from your operation, injury or illness and be fully independent again. As a result, the length of time varies on a case-by-case basis. Your comfort and recovery are always a priority, which means your convalescent care plan will never be rushed. 

Typically, this type of care lasts from as little as a few days to a few months. If you’re not likely to fully recover after a few months, a longer live-in care plan might be a better option.

How do you arrange convalescent care?

If you know that you’ll require convalescent care following an operation, illness or injury, and you’ll need to stay in a care home, it’s advised that you book two weeks in advance to guarantee a space. However, if you require care immediately, you should always call care homes to check availability.

Before beginning convalescent care, an assessment will be carried out to determine what level of support you need and your care plan. This is the perfect time to discuss your goals and what you hope to get out of the care, you can also determine whether a short-term convalescent stay in a care home is right for you or if you’d rather receive the care at home.

Who pays for convalescent care?

Usually, you’ll pay for your convalescent care yourself. However, if you require help, your local authority will carry out a financial assessment to determine whether to offer funding. If convalescent care is vital to your full recovery there’ll be plenty of funding options out there for you. 

Convalescent care is incredibly helpful for those needing extra support for their full recovery. It helps you get where you need to be with the support of a professional carer. Whether you opt for home visits or a short-term stay, convalescent care can help you regain your independence.

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