Growing Old in a Good Home
U.S. News Online (05/21/01) Vol. 12, No. 23 p.1; Shapiro, Joseph P.

More seniors are abandoning the idea of retiring to a nursing facility and are instead pursuing alternative living options. Statistics show that well over 800,000 seniors reside at assisted-living facilities, which provide the same amenities as nursing homes, except residents are allowed to live in apartments. About 1.5 million seniors live in independent apartments that provide basic services like meal preparations, and some 6 million chronically ill and disabled people receive in-house care. However, there are cons to these alternative care options. Unlike nursing home care, for which the government pays up to 60 percent of the tab, private care facilities receive fewer government dollars and are more costly. What is more, the space in most assisted living facilities is limited. Nearly 40 percent of the vacancies in these homes are found in California, Florida, and Pennsylvania.


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