The different types of care explained

Written by Ranger Home Care
24 November 2023

As we get older we may reach a stage where we need some extra help with our activities of daily living. People may start to feel vulnerable, worried about being alone, and less confident in their own homes.  Caring for the elderly is not just a matter of ensuring health and safety – it is about preserving dignity, promoting independence, and maintaining a quality of life everyone deserves.

With an array of options available, navigating the world of elderly care can seem daunting. But there is no need to worry, as our guide to the different types of elderly care is here to help you understand what is available. Starting with…

Home Care

This type of care is like your favourite blanket, arriving right where you live, your home. Home care is the epitome of coziness, comfort, and that personal touch that makes all the difference. It is like having a friend stop by, one who is there to lend a hand with the day-to-day tasks that maybe not be as easy as they used to be.

Think of a carer preparing a home-cooked meal, sorting out your medications for the week, or just sharing a cup of tea and a chat. This is perfect for those who need a little help to stay safe but love the thought of staying put in their own homes surrounded by their cherished memories.

Domiciliary Care

Domiciliary care is one of the main types of home care. It comprises carers visiting for a few hours within the day to help an elderly person live independently. As above, they can complete or assist with household tasks, administer medication, bring someone their shopping, or just check in to ensure everything is okay. This care is paid by the hour.

Live-in Care

Live-in care is the other type of home care available. It involves having a carer stay in your home to help you when you need it. It is perfect for people who need help day during the day and want the comfort of knowing there is someone in the home at night. Someone to make sure the doors are locked, the place is clean and tidy, and you are safely in your bed. Someone to wake you in the morning with a cup of tea and help you through the day whenever you need them.

A live-in carer does things like help with bathing, give medications, cook meals, and even go with you to doctor’s appointments, and social events and help you host your family and friends at home. More than just doing tasks, they also become a friend you can talk to and spend time with. This way, you get the help you need and have someone around for company, all while keeping your usual way of life and staying in the place you love your own space, your home.

This type of home care is particularly suited for those who may be managing chronic conditions or recovering from illness and require ongoing help. The presence of a carer ensures safety, as they are trained to handle emergencies and can respond promptly to any situation that may arise.

Importantly, live-in care adapts to the changing needs of the individual, ensuring that as their situation evolves, the care they receive evolves with them. This flexible and personal approach allows for a level of care and comfort that is unmatched by other types of elderly care services. This type of care can be short-term, what we call respite care, or long-term. It is charged at a weekly rate.

You can employ a carer privately and manage their holiday, NI, and payroll.

You could use an introductory agency.

They will supply you with a self-employed carer and pay them a fee for introducing you to the carer.

Or you can have the safest option of an agency, that employs the carers, ensures all DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) checks are completed, references, the carers are fully trained, offers 24-hour support, and ensures that you are never left without care.

An agency is your intermediary between the carer and yourself, always ensuring that you have a fully managed service and get to have the carer you want when you want them. You do not have to manage any employment issues.

Residential Care

This type of care involves leaving you moving to the place of care. It could be like a hotel where you have a room that is your own and you eat your meal in a restaurant. It offers the opportunity to live with others and does not involve any management of the home.

Assisted Living Facilities

Assisted living facilities are great for those who need some help but still want to keep some independence. People live in their own apartments, giving them the freedom to do their own thing when they want. But they have the comfort of knowing that someone is there if they need them.  

Within an assisted living community (or sheltered housing), help is tailored to the individual. Whether it is help with bathing, dressing, or managing medications, trained staff are on hand to assist with the personal aspects of daily life.

They do this with a respectful and sensitive approach to preserve the dignity of each resident. But you do need to check the services that the place you choose has these extra care services available as some places can not offer additional care services and you will have to employ a domiciliary agency to provide you with support.

Nursing Homes

When people need a lot of medical help, nursing homes are there to take care of them day and night. They are set up to deal with serious health issues that need close watching and regular treatment from nurses and doctors. Your care is always Nurse led as an RGN (Registered General Nurse) is always on duty.

In a nursing home, residents can also get different types of assistance. For example, in-house, physiotherapy is available to help them move better or get stronger, and speech therapy to help with talking and understanding after something like a stroke. If they need help with everyday tasks like dressing or eating, occupational therapy is provided.

EMI (Elderly Mentally Infirm) units

Short for Elderly Mentally Infirm, EMI units are Nursing or Residential homes with specialised areas designed to cater to the needs of those with Alzheimer’s disease or other types of dementia. These units create a safe, secure, and controlled space where routines are predictable and familiar, doors are locked to prevent people from leaving and gardens are fenced providing a safe and secure environment,

In addition to structured schedules, these units typically offer tailored activities and therapies that aim to stimulate memories and provide a sense of comfort and normalcy to residents.

Hospice Care

Hospice care is there to help and comfort people who are near the end of their lives. It’s not about trying to cure them but about making sure they are as comfortable and pain-free as possible during their end-of-life journey, often referred to as Palliative care.

The people who provide hospice care look after the physical pain and also help with feelings and spiritual needs, for both the person who is ill and their family. It is all about making the last part of someone’s life peaceful and respecting their wishes.

In Summary

We hope that has helped explain the differences in a simple manner. Which? put together a guide on how to choose a home care service which you might find useful to read as well. If you have any questions or comments, please let us know.

How we can help

If live-in care sounds like it would work with your needs, Ranger Home Care is here to help.  ALL facilities of a residential home, and nursing home are available to you in the comfort of your own home. We can provide fully trained carers for companionship through to highly trained and skilled carers capable of managing stoma care, hoists, and end-of-life care. We can organise hospital beds, C-Pap machines, physiotherapists, and community nurses to ensure that you always receive the very best care – it means you can have your own dedicated carer surrounded by your own belongings at home.

We have a proven track record in the care sector, with a commitment to respect, dignity, and unwavering support.

Contact us today on 01252 850040 or email and we will guide you through how live-in care can benefit your loved one and give your family peace of mind.

Read some of our client stories

Steven’s story: Living with dementia

Steven’s story: Living with dementia

Steven’s a successful car dealer and entrepreneur developed dementia in his 60’s. This had a profound effect on his busy hectic life. His desire to remain at home and continue as much of his normal routine, including visiting the pub…

Ross’s story: Living with cerebral palsy

Ross’s story: Living with cerebral palsy

Living with cerebral palsy, Ross was unable to independently complete daily tasks before he had live-in care.

Live-in care enabled him to regain his independence without being limited by his physical constraints.

Evelyn’s story: Caring for someone with dementia

Evelyn’s story: Caring for someone with dementia

Living with dementia could have denied Evelyn of her many loves, but having a live in carer gives her the freedom to continue enjoying her interests, such as retaining her well-kept garden and staying with her dog.