Family Members Of Residents Signal Future Direction For Providers
 As senior living providers are planning their own futures, many are wondering what the next generation of older adults will desire relative to their housing and lifestyle needs. The National Survey of Family Members of Residents Living in CCRCs—a collaborative effort of Mather LifeWays, Ziegler, and Brecht Associates—is the first-ever national survey of its kind, as the respondents are people with first-hand knowledge of the CCRC concept and who also represent the most likely future prospects for CCRCs. The survey findings can help CCRCs plan with respect to future services, programs, amenities, housing, and lifestyle options, according to Linda Hollinger-Smith, PhD, Vice President, Institute on Aging, at Mather LifeWays in Evanston, Illinois.
 The survey was conducted between March and June of this year. Of the 1,500 CCRCs that were invited to participate (drawn from the 1,800 defined and identified by Ziegler in 2009), 221 CCRCs (representing 65,000 residents) agreed. Responses were gathered from 3,647 individuals—91% adult children of current residents or spouses of adult children of current residents. The remaining 9% were other family members or those whose parent recently passed away, but their responses were not significantly different from the majority. The CCRC residents were currently in independent living environments (72%), assisted living (14%), and skilled nursing or memory care (14%). The survey focused on five key areas:

Opinions about the CCRC in which the resident lives,

The respondent’s own retirement and future housing plans,

Interests and preferences for a CCRC lifestyle.

Programs, services, amenities, and long-term care option preferences, and

Housing option choices relative to meeting future needs.

 The geographic distribution of the participating CCRCs was broad and included CCRCs in 49 states plus the District of Columbia. Only Alaska was not represented. Nearly all CCRCs in the sample were either not-for-profit entities or affiliated with a not-for-profit organization. Among the findings, in fact, 66% of respondents indicated that they would be more likely to move into a CCRC sponsored by a not-for-profit organization, while only 10% indicated they would choose a for-profit CCRC—perhaps simply an indication of the respondents’ familiarity with the communities in which their family members reside. There was no significant difference between the choice of a faith-based vs. non-denominational CCRC or between a standalone CCRC vs. part of a chain.
The sponsors—a natural fit
The collaboration by the three sponsors—a senior living provider, a marketing specialist, and an investment banker—was a natural fit. From the provider perspective, Mather LifeWays wanted to profile family members who, in the future, are most likely to consider a CCRC lifestyle for themselves. And since all other studies to date have looked only at the relative interest of the general population, it was important to see if those findings were also the case for people who, through their family members, have current experience with the CCRC concept…Want to read more? Click here for a free trial to Senior Living Business and download the current issue today