Adult Day Care

Adult Day Care

Adult day programs offer an alternative to institutionalization for seniors who cannot stay alone during the day but who do not need patient care. They can serve as a respite for caregivers. These programs are designed to promote maximum independence. Seniors usually attend on a scheduled basis.

Most adult day care centers offer personal assistance and therapeutic activities (AARP, 2004). Services may also include:

  • Nursing
  • Social services
  • Restorative services
  • Medical and health care monitoring
  • Exercise sessions
  • Field trips
  • Recreational activities
  • Physical, occupational, and speech therapy
  • Medication administration
  • Meals
  • Transportation to and from the facility

According to a national survey by Partners in Caregiving, the United States presently has 3,407 adult day care centers (The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2004). Most centers (78 percent) are nonprofit organizations.

One of the most well-known day care centers in On Lok SeniorHealth in San Francisco. On Lok provides preventative, primary, and acute medical services and long-term care. Its primary focus is preventative measures that maintain the health and well-being of seniors. On Lok, one of the country’s first senior day health centers, began in 1971 in the Chinatown, North Beach, and Polk Gulch neighborhoods. The founders’ concern about the fragmented care they saw motivated them to create their own holistic senior health care plan.

The On Lok model of coordinated service delivery and innovative financing is being replicated across the country under the name the Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE). Today more than 70 organizations in 30 states are in various stages of the PACE model – from start-up to full operation.

The information above is reprinted from Working with Seniors: Health, Financial and Social Issues with permission from Society of Certified Senior Advisors® . Copyright © 2009. All rights reserved.