Providing short-term care seems to be a great way to improve revenue and convert some of them to long term residents? Are you doing it? How is it working?

I bought my first copy of, “The 36-Hour Day” for my Mom when she took my grandmother into her home. That was well over 20 years ago. While aimed at families caring for loved ones with dementia, the book is a classic “field guide” for caring for the elderly in one’s home or in a senior living setting. Since then I have given several copies to friends caring for loved ones or working with seniors.   The broadest recurring themes are, “take care of yourself”, “get help when you need it” and “this is not about martyrdom”.  In other words, find ways to give yourself a break . .  .“find and use respite care”.  Good idea, but in truth figuring out how to do that in real life, finding practical situations is not so easy. It is particularly problematic if the caregiver needs to be away for a few days or weeks. Here are some of the challenges family members face:

  • How do I find someone to come and stay with mom or dad?
  • If I find someone can I trust them?
  • Will mom or dad like them or at least tolerate them?
  • What happens if that temporary care worker flakes out or has a problem of their own?

I recently got to talking with Blair Carey at about how assisted living could be the perfect solution for these stressed out, overburdened home care givers.  We got to wondering how many senior communities have a short-term care program, how active it is and how often those short-term stays turn into permanent stays. Here is why it seems to be a perfect fit for assisted living providers:

  • An assisted living community already has all of the resources required to meet family concerns.
  • Empty units are a perishable commodity, meaning when the day or week is over, the revenue potential is gone.  It becomes a way to tap turn those empty units into cash flow.
  • Some percentage of those short-term residents will find the experience to be so nifty they will turn into permanent residents.
  • The more options you can offer your local marketplace, the more visibility you have. is particularly interested in working with senior communities who either have a short-term stay program in place or are interested in starting one.  The team is currently working on expanding their directory site to more easily allow assisted living communities that offer a short-term stay program with families who have that need.   To further that goal, we are doing a survey that asks a few questions about short-term stay programs.  As a modest enticement for completing this survey, we will be giving away three nifty Senior Housing Forum Coffee Mugs in a random drawing.    Click here to take the survey