Understanding Medicaid Home and Community Services: A Primer, 2010 Edition. Major Types of Residential Care Settings in Which Medicaid Services May be Provided

10/29/2010

Three major types of residential care settings that are provider owned and/or operated furnish long-term care services and supports to persons of all ages with disabilities and/or chronic illnesses: adult foster care, child foster care, and residential care facilities.

Definitions of Residential Care Settings

Residential care settings. A generic term encompassing all types of state-regulated (licensed or certified) foster care and residential care facilities, regardless of their size or the population they serve.

Foster care. A home owned or rented by an individual or family in which they live and in which they provide care and support for one or more unrelated persons. Depending on the state, these homes can serve up to 6 or 8 residents, but typically serve 1 to 3 residents. (In a few states, corporations own and/or operate settings licensed as foster homes and provide staffing 24 hours-a-day.) Foster care providers can serve adults or children.

Residential care facility. A building or residence--other than a foster care home--owned, rented, or managed by the service provider, or the provider’s agent, to provide housing, services, and supervision. This term includes many types of facilities--from group homes serving as few as 2 or 3 individuals with developmental disabilities to board and care homes or assisted living facilities serving 100 or more older adults.

When referring to residential care settings in specific states, the Primer will use the terms these states use.

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