KHI News Service

New report paints profile of typical assisted living resident

By KHI NEWS SERVICE | April 13, 2012


Residential Care Facility Residents, 2010

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The majority of people living in residential care facilities nationwide are white females over the age of 85, and one in five is a Medicaid beneficiary, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

People living in state-regulated residential care facilities — such as assisted living communities — receive housing and services because they cannot live independently but generally do not require the skilled level of care provided by full-service nursing homes.

Nationwide, 91 percent of residential care facility residents are white, 70 percent are female and 54 percent are age 85 or older. Medicaid paid for at least some residential care services for 19 percent of residents.

In Kansas, 60 percent of residential care facility residents are age 85 or older and 73 percent are female, according to the Kansas Department on Aging. The agency does not collect information on residents' ethnicity.

About 18 percent of the state's residents living in residential care facilities receive Medicaid benefits.

There are about 7,966 residents in the state's 264 standalone residential care facilities. Another 93 facilities are attached to nursing homes, and similar care is also provided around the state via boarding care and "home plus" services.

The CDC report also found:

• 4 in 10 residents received assistance with three or more activities such as bathing, cleaning and cooking;

• 26 percent received no assistance with any activities;

• the 10 most common chronic conditions among residents were: high blood pressure (57 percent), Alzheimer’s disease or other dementias (42 percent), heart disease (34 percent), depression (28 percent), arthritis (27 percent), osteoporosis (21 percent), diabetes (17 percent), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and allied conditions (15 percent), cancer (11 percent) and stroke (11 percent).

• nearly three-fourths of residents at some point had been diagnosed with at least two of those 10 conditions.

Comparable data on those points are not collected in Kansas.

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