A National Study of Assisted Living for the Frail Elderly: Final Summary Report. Services and Nurse Staffing


General Services. Nearly all facilities provided or arranged 24-hour staff, three meals a day, and housekeeping. More than 90 percent of the ALF administrators also reported that the facility provided medication reminders and assistance with bathing and dressing; 88 percent of the ALFs provided or arranged central storage of drugs or assistance with administration of medications.

Nurse Staffing. Almost three-quarters of the ALFS (71 percent) had a licensed nurse, either a registered nurse (RN) or licensed vocational nurse (LVN), working on staff full or part-time. Slightly more than half the ALFs (55 percent) reported having an RN on staff either full or part-time. Forty percent of the ALFs reported having a full-time RN on staff.

Providing or Arranging Services. Administrators were also asked whether the facility provided services with their own staff or arranged with an outside agency for the provision of the service. With the exception of therapies, if an ALF offered a service, such as help with bathing, dressing, and managing medications, most provided it with their own staff. About half (52 percent) of the facilities provided some care or monitoring by a licensed nurse (RN or LPN) with their own staff, and one-quarter (25 percent) arranged for nursing care with an agency. However, one in five ALF administrators (21 percent) reported that the facility did not arrange or provide any care or monitoring by a licensed nurse.

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