What is Elder Care?
Elder Care describes the issues and care concerns for the frail elderly who
make up 5% of the over 65 population. This means that of the approximate 45 million seniors currently in the U.S.
16% of the 2003 general population), 2.25 million are frail. Frailty is defined as chronic functional
impairment in one or more of 6 activities of daily living (ADL's) requiring the help of another person. These
What are Residential Board and Care Homes?
Residential Board and Care Homes are usually
considered to be small family homes in residential neighborhoods licensed to provide care to four to six residents. All custodial
care, meals, and activities are provided by live-in staff. The administrator/ owner, who generally does not live at the home,
normally picks up the medication, does the shopping and provides the transportation to the doctor. Most are licensed to accept
non-ambulatory residents and have been constructed with these residents needs in mind (e.g., wheelchair accessible bathrooms
and inside/ outside ramps). Residential Board and Care homes are allowed to provide assistance to residents who need help
transferring from bed to wheelchair, but they are not permitted to accept or provide care for residents who are completely
immobile, bedridden or unable to turn in bed. The high staff-to-resident ratio (usually two staff to six residents) make this
an ideal setting for residents who are incontinent, have advanced dementia, Parkinsons disease, Alzheimers disease, or who
have a high level of physical care needs. The homes can also accept "wanderers" as long as they are equipped with
alarms on the doors and are gated. Normally, Residential Board and Care homes will also accept respite (short-term) clients
if a room is available.
Board and Care homes are not permitted to accept residents with skilled nursing needs, there are times, however, when Community
Care Licensing will grant exemptions to this rule. For example, depending on the nature of the condition and care required,
administrators can frequently obtain waivers for residents who have catheters or colostomies (e.g. when working in conjuction
with an outside home health agency which can clean the catheter as needed). Community Care Licensing evaluates each exemption
request on a case-by-case basis. The administrator must be granted a waiver before the resident actually moves into the home.