David Ammons is president of Retirement Living Associates, Inc. (RLA), a company which provides planning, development, marketing, and management services for new and existing retirement communities. He has worked in and with Senior Living Communities since his graduation from Wake Forest University in 1985. Contact David Ammons at firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-783-0044 ext 21.
Expanded Service Options under Consideration
Hardly a week goes by that I’m not engaged in a conversation with management at a community about the concept of the “CCRC Without Walls”. Various CCRC communities, now usually referred to as Life Plan Communities, have coined different names for these programs and perhaps, in some cases, the name tells us more about the program. Regardless, all the names fall under NC General Statute 58.64.7 titled “Continuing Care Services Without Lodging”.
Borrowing a section from the Statute and paraphrasing a little, the idea is a Continuing Care Retirement Community may desire to provide or arrange for continuing care services, including home care services, to an individual who has entered into a continuing care contract with the provider but is not yet receiving lodging.
Across North Carolina there are, according to the July 2021 NC Department of Insurance Guide, 61 Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC). I am not sure how many of these are offering a Continuing Care Services Without Lodging contract or package. I do know the number is growing as many see a range of possible benefits from such a program. These benefits include: increasing services to their primary market, offering more benefits that go beyond a traditional waiting list, financial gain to the Life Plan Community, and the ability to meet a request from many seniors for more choices and more ways to benefit from the Community. Several aspects of these contracts vary such as does the contract include meals on campus, do members of this form of contract have access to use the Community for things like the Wellness Center, Private Dining, possibly a Clinic or a Physical Therapy area or other medical services. In my opinion, the largest variable is simply whether or not the Services Without Lodging contract includes the ability for the senior to move directly to licensed care whether that be Assisted or Skilled or Memory Care.
I think this last aspect is an important one as a safety net and is critical that the community and the member fully understand what circumstances trigger what steps.
A final point, which is a hugely important one and one which I will provide more thoughts on in a future article, is this: do we foresee a world where CCRC’s are more “at home” than in the community? There is some discussion in the industry about an Assisted Living and/or Skilled facility offering services in an “at home” scenario to more members than live on site.
As you may be considering contracting for a Continuing Care Services Without Lodging contract be sure to fully review the community’s Disclosure Statement. By law it has to be fully disclosed in that document and these are available online as well as at the community.