Assisted living residences are registered facilities that provide housing, hospitality services, and one or two prescribed services to three or more adults.
Assisted Living refers to the provision of housing and services that allow residents to age in place a retirement home with light to medium supports before having to move to a nursing home or long term care home. In this way, services bridge the gap and are the in-between choice of independent supportive living and long term residentail (nursing) care.
Individuals must be able to direct their own care, in separate, self contained units, that is they are cognitively capable and have the ability to make informed, voluntary decisions regarding their care needs and living arrangements or are living with a spouse / partner that is able to do so.
In addition to the basic security and safety, meals, social activities and housekeeping offered in an independent supportive living residence, assisted living services typically include personal assistance with bathing, dressing, grooming, washing, hygiene, eating, gentle reminders, help with taking medication and wayfinding for those with mild Alzheimers disease or dementia. Nursing services are usually provided.
Care is often provided in a designated section of a Retirement Home, but can be provided in a resident's suite. And while services were limited to one or two prescribed services per building, the Minister of Health introduced amendments to the Community Care and Assisted Living Act in March of 2016 in response to recommendations by the BC Seniors Living Association and the Office of the Seniors Advocate in BC. The proposed amendments would remove the current limitation on assisted living residences that allows them to provide a maximum of two services out of a list of six prescribed services. This approach is, in our opinion, the preferred approach. Residents should be able to age in place without having to relocate to another building. By allowing more than two "prescribed" services by resident, care plans can be tailored to meet each resident's needs and keep them in the familiarity of their assisted living home, their friends, neighbours, care givers and the neighbourhood community and avoid moving them to residential care before they really need it.
Costs to residents are market driven and, in some cases, may be subsidized by government programs. Assisted Living may be privately or publicly delivered.
Access to a publicly funded Assisted Living is through the Health Authority in your community. This is the 'single entry point' system in BC. For privately delivered Assisted Living, you may apply directly to the building.
Assisted Living Residences in British Columbia are required to be licensed and are regulated.