What is the difference between a nursing home and a care home?

As one of Hampshire's leading nursing homes, we get asked a lot of questions by people looking for a residential home for their loved one. One question we get asked the most is, "What's the difference between a care home and a nursing home?"

"Care home" is actually an umbrella term used to describe the different types of residential care homes. What's actually being asked is, "What's the difference between a nursing home and a residential care home?"

While a nursing home and residential care home have many similarities, there's a key difference to understand. We've gone into more detail below!

What is the difference between a residential care home and a nursing home?

Both a nursing home and a residential care home are a home away from home for those who are no longer able to live independently. Whether they need support due to general deterioration from ageing, a specific health condition, or a long-term illness, a nursing home and residential care home will both provide 24-hour care.

The main difference between a residential care home and a nursing home is the level of care provided. A nursing home provides specific medical care for those with illnesses and health conditions, whereas a residential care home will simply provide general care.

It's common for a nursing home to specialise in specific types of care for a small number of conditions, allowing their staff to provide expert care to their residents with these particular challenges.

Allenbrook is both a nursing home in Hampshire, as well as a residential care home. This means that our staff are able to cater to those with specific medical needs as well as those who are simply looking to move somewhere for a little extra support with their day-to-day routine.

What services do nursing homes provide?

As mentioned above, a nursing home will provide a medical-based service. They will have qualified medical staff on-site 24 hours a day to provide any medical treatments and advanced needs.

The staff are trained to identify symptoms and changes in residents' health and conditions so that they can react and provide the right support for them.

The ability to provide medical care provides a higher level of care, which is often reflected in the price. These homes are often slightly more expensive as they cover medical care as well as generic personal care.

What services are provided by residential care homes?

A residential care home also provides 24-hour care, but the staff aren't qualified to provide specific medical care. Therefore, the care provided is for daily tasks such as washing, dressing or eating.

These types of homes are ideal for those who are unable to live independently due to common ageing problems such as mobility issues that mean they struggle with getting dressed or with personal hygiene.

The staff at a residential care home are often trained to support residents with their basic medical needs, but they aren't trained to notice specific changes in symptoms or conditions.

As this is a slightly lower level of care, the fees for a residential care home can be slightly less than those for a nursing home.

Which care service is right for you?

Nursing homes and residential care homes will both provide a comfortable and active lifestyle, encouraging residents to socialise and participate in the many activities put on throughout the week.

The easiest way to determine which care setting is right for your loved one is to ask "What are their medical needs?" If their needs are complex or they have a specific health condition or illness, they're likely to be better off in a nursing home, where they will get the medical support needed.

However, if they have few medical needs and only need help with day-to-day activities, a residential nursing home will be able to provide the care they need.

Why choose Allenbrook nursing home in Hampshire?

Allenbrook Nursing and Residential Care Home is located in the beautiful rural surroundings of Fordingbridge, Hampshire.

Established in 1989, we've been providing excellent care to our residents for over 30 years, and in that time have built a close relationship with our local community. This provides fun opportunities for our residents to attend local community events and meet their neighbours.

Lifestyle is the heart of everything we do as we want to maintain or improve the quality of life for our residents. With this in mind, we have daily activities for everyone to participate in.

Our range of rooms offers a choice of options to suit resident's needs, and we always encourage residents to personalise them to make them feel at home.

Finally, residents can choose whether they eat their home-cooked meals with others or on their own. Each delicious meal is cooked with fresh ingredients.

We pride ourselves on being a home away from home for our residents, whether they are with us for long-term care or respite care.

We recommend you visit us to discover the services we offer and get a feel for the lifestyle here. A visit is also a great opportunity to meet our staff and talk to some of the residents to find out the joys of living at our care home.

Call us on 01425 656589 or complete our contact form and we will get back to you as soon as possible.