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Celebrating Four Decades of Quality Care ~ 1982 - 2022

Medical Terminology for Caregivers: Abbreviations and Acronyms

When relying on a CG, which is the abbreviation for caregiver, your loved one may hear a variety of abbreviations and acronyms. But what do they all mean? In this post, we will review some common medical terminology for caregivers.

Senior Living Acronyms

There are various levels of care in senior living facilities and with those care levels come different acronyms. Some of these include:

ALF: Medical abbreviation for “assisted living facility,” which is housing for those who need assistance such as bathing, eating, and housekeeping.

MLC: Abbreviation for “multi-level living community,” which offers two or more levels of living. Combos include independent living/assisted living and assisted living/memory support.

MS: Abbreviation for “memory support,” which are communities designed for people with Alzheimer’s or dementia.

SAC: Abbreviation for “stand-alone community,” which only offers one area of living.

RB: Abbreviation for “rehab services,” which includes physical therapy, occupational therapy, respiratory therapy, and speech therapy.

Long-Term Care Abbreviations

Long-term care involves meeting a person’s health and personal needs during a period of time. In order to be eligible for long-term care, one must be chronically ill and must show an inability to perform at least two activities of daily living for a minimum of 90 days.

Some examples of long-term care abbreviations include:

  • LTC: Medical abbreviation for “long-term care.”

  • LTCF: Medical abbreviation for “long-term care facility.”

  • LTCH: Medical abbreviation for “long-term care hospital.”

  • LTCI: Medical abbreviation for “long-term care insurance.”

  • LTCO: Medical abbreviation for “long-term care ombudsman.”

Skilled Nursing Facility Abbreviations

The SNF medical abbreviation stands for “skilled nursing facility,” which is a short-term nursing care center one would move to if further care is needed once they’re discharged from the hospital. These facilities provide 24/7 assistance to seniors when they don’t have assistance at home.

Common abbreviations you will see around skilled nursing facilities include:

  • ADL: Medical abbreviation for “activities of daily living,” which include eating, bathing, using the toilet, and other necessities.

  • RN: Medical abbreviation for “registered nurse.”

  • LPN: Medical abbreviation for “licensed practicing nurse.”

  • LVN: Medical abbreviation for “licensed vocational nurse.”

  • CNA: Medical abbreviation for “certified nursing aide.”

Home Health Care Abbreviations

Caregivers will often use some medical abbreviations left and right while caring for older adults. These pieces of medical terminology for caregivers include but are not limited to:

  • HHA: Medical abbreviation for “home health aide,” which is a trained and certified health-care worker who provides in-home assistance to a patient with personal care and household duties and monitors the patient’s condition. It can also stand for “home health agency.”

  • HFA: Abbreviation for “Hospice Foundation of America,” which is a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing the U.S. health care system and the role of hospice within it.

  • HEP: Abbreviation for home exercise program.

  • HCQIP: Abbreviation for “Home Care Quality Improvement Program,” which focuses on enhancing the outcomes of care, measuring improvement, and surveying for patient satisfaction.

  • IADL: Abbreviation for “instrumental activities of daily living,” which include activities requiring higher functioning, such as managing finances, shopping, cooking, and using the phone.

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