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June 10, 2009—The just-released 2009 Overview of Assisted Living provides senior housing providers, policy makers, associations, and other professionals essential facts and figures about assisted living to use when defining the business to investors, media, consumers, and others. It is the most comprehensive effort to detail key benchmarks in the assisted living business. The latest edition updates data gathered in the 2006 Overview of Assisted Living. To order or download, visit the Web sites of the listed organizations responsible for the report:  www.aahsa.org, www.alfa.org, www.seniorshousing.org, www.ncal.org, and www.nic.org.

Among the data revealed in this study:

Primary Payment Plans

Forty-five percent of responding communities offer tiered pricing for bundled services vs. 51 percent in 2006; 24 percent offer one all-inclusive rate vs. 22 percent in 2006. Ninety-one percent provide three meals as part of basic rates and 48 percent also include assistance with ADLs in the rate, while 52 percent charge extra for ADL assistance. Nearly all communities include wellness and social/recreational activities in the rate.

Assisted Living Occupancy

In 2006, median occupancy was 94.7 percent and average occupancy was 90.1 percent. Occupancy rates in 2009 are relatively consistent with where they were three years ago (about one percent lower).

Resident Demographics

The average age of residents at the time of the survey was 86.9 years, slightly higher than in 2006 when it was 85.3. Female residents outnumber male residents by almost 3 to 1. Residents’ median annual income is $18,972 vs. $15,668 in 2006.

Resident Assessments

Virtually all communities (97 percent) conduct a formal functional/physical assessment prior to a resident move-in. Likewise, virtually all communities (94 percent) create a formal written service or care plan for residents.

Fire Safety

Virtually all communities have smoke detectors in resident rooms and all have smoke detectors in common areas. About 97 percent have sprinklers in resident rooms and common areas.

Criminal Background Checks

Nearly all communities (97 percent) conduct a criminal background check on every employee prior to hire.


Order the Overview on the ALFA website.

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