Visitation Policy at the Bridges

Our Visitation Policy is designed to balance safety with the needs of our residents and their families.

Visitation hours are daily from 8am until 9pm.
Temperatures are taken upon entry to the community and wearing a mask is encouraged when within six feet of a resident.

The Bridges Visitation Policy guarantees families the right to visit their loved ones receiving care in our community.  The Bridges policy allows for in-person visitation in any of the following circumstances:

  • End-of-life situations
  • A resident who was living with family before being admitted and is struggling with the change in environment and lack of in-person family support.
  • A resident who is making one or more major medical decisions.
  • A resident who is experiencing emotional distress or grieving the loss of a friend or family member who recently died.
  • A resident needing cueing or encouragement to eat or drink which was previously provided by a family member or caregiver.
  • A resident who used to talk and interact with others and is now seldom speaking.

Additionally, The Bridges allows a resident the option to designate a visitor as an essential caregiver.  In-person visitation will be allowed by the essential caregiver for at least two hours daily in addition to other authorized visitation. 

Donna Chats: Hear From Our Executive Director

Questions We Often Hear

What is assisted living?

Assisted living is for those who are 55+ who want to live as independently as possible, however, may need some assistance with their daily activities such as laundry, housekeeping, meal preparation, medication management, etc.

What is the difference between assisted living and skilled nursing?

Skilled nursing facilities provide around the clock complex nursing care that assisted living facilities are not equipped to handle, such a wound management, intravenous medications, and tube feedings. Assisted living communities, on the other hand, will generally provide assistance and supervision with activities of daily living; this often includes medication management.

(see the Donna Chat video above for more information)

When is it time to make a move to assisted living?

The best time to make a move is before something happens that forces your loved one to make a move quickly. Some signs that indicate it may be time to consider assisted living include:

  • Medication may be taken incorrectly or dosage forgotten
  • Meals may be forgotten or spoiled food in the refrigerator
  • House is not clean or tidy
  • Laundry is piling up or same clothing is repeatedly worn
  • Bills are routinely unpaid
  • Isolated and lonely

What questions should be considered when touring a community?

  1. Are the grounds well-maintained?
  2. Is the facility attractive, clean and odor-free?
  3. Are there different floor plans? What is the square footage of each?
  4. What are the amenities? What is the fee for each?
  5. Is there an activities calendar? Ask to see the calendar.
  6. Are there options at every meal? Ask to see a menu.
  7. Is there an entrance fee?
  8. Is there 24-hour staff on-site?
  9. What is the monthly rent?
  10. Is transportation available?
  11. How are medications managed?

What is the best advice for making the transition to assisted living?

It is important to set up the apartment with furnishings that are familiar to your loved one. Be sure to bring photos and personal possessions that are meaningful to provide a home-like feel.

How long is the average length of stay?

Statistically, the average length of stay in an assisted living facility is 2 – 2.5 years.

How does one pay for assisted living?

Assisted living communities are typically private pay. However, there are veteran benefits that may be available for qualified individuals, including the surviving spouse of a veteran. Long term care insurance policies may also provide reimbursement for assisted living expenses.

Medicare does not reimburse for assisted living.

Why is assisted living so expensive?

The cost of residing in an assisted living community is significant. This is due primarily to the high level of staffing required, specifically nursing assistants and licensed nurses, in order to provide the care and supervision needed by residents. Assisted living communities are typically staffed 24 hours a day.

(see the Donna Chat video above for more information)

Is home health care cheaper than assisted living?

Whether home health care is more or less expensive than assisted living is dependent on the number of hours and days a caregiver is employed. Home health aides are typically paid privately by the hour. An aide providing care to an individual for several hours each day, several days per week will likely be less expensive than residing in an assisted living facility. As care needs increase, it may become more financially advantageous to move into an assisted living community, especially considering the wide array of amenities included.

(see the Donna Chat video above for more information)

Helpful Resources

Alzheimer’s Association

The Alzheimer’s Association is the world’s leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer’s care, support and research.

Florida Agency for Healthcare Administration

Florida Agency for Healthcare Administration is responsible for the administration of the Florida Medicaid program, licensure and regulation of Florida’s health facilities and for providing information to Floridians about the quality of care they receive.


Medicare is the National health insurance program for people age 65 or older, some people with disabilities under age 65 and people with End-Stage Renal Disease.

West Central Florida Area
Agency on Aging, Inc.

West Central Florida Area Agency on Aging is a not-for-profit organization providing assistance, advocacy and answers on aging.

Veteran’s Benefits

Veteran’s Benefits Administration provides financial and other forms of assistance to veterans and their dependents.

Glossary of Terms

Advanced Directives

An advance directive is a witnessed written document by a person expressing their instructions about health care, through documents, including but not limited to, the:

  • Designation of health care surrogate
  • A living will; or
  • A do-not-resuscitate order

Alzheimer’s disease

Alzheimer’s disease is an irreversible, progressive brain disease that slowly destroys memory and thinking skills and, eventually even the ability to carry out the simplest tasks of daily living.


Dementia is a general term for a decline in mental ability severe enough to interfere with daily life.

Health Care Surrogate

A health care surrogate shall have the authority to act for the person during his or her incapacity.

Home Health Care

Home health care is a wide range of health care services that can be given in your home for an illness or injury.


A hospice is a facility or program that provides pain relief and other support services for the terminally ill.

Living Will

A living will is a witnessed written declaration providing instructions concerning life-prolonging procedures in the event such person suffers from a terminal condition.

Long Term Care Insurance

Long-term care insurance is an insurance product which helps pay for long-term care typically not covered by regular health insurance, Medicare or Medicare Supplemental Insurance.

Power of Attorney

A power of attorney exists when one person, the principal, gives someone else, the attorney in fact or agent, written authority to do some specified acts.

Skilled Nursing

Skilled nursing facilities provide skilled nursing care on a 24-hour basis. Skilled nursing care is comprehensive, planned medical care that includes rehabilitative therapy, diet supervision and trained observation.