Long term care (LTC) refers to a range of medical, personal and social services designed to meet the needs of people with disabilities, chronic illnesses, or limitations in their ability to function independently. LTC may be delivered at home, in a nursing home, adult day care facility or other facility, and involves both skilled and unskilled care.

Skilled care generally refers to services provided by or under the supervision of trained medical personnel, such as professional nurses and therapists. A doctor must certify the need for skilled care and a treatment plan is usually involved.

Unskilled care generally refers to services provided by a home health aide or home attendant that help a person perform activities of daily living (ADL) or instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs). Personal care or custodial care, helps people with ADLs, such as getting in and out of bed, dressing, bathing, eating and using the bathroom. Homemaker or house keeping services help people with IADLs, including cooking and cleaning.