Assisted Living

Staffing and Services

Assisted living centers are required to have sufficient number of personnel to provide effective and safe care.

For assisted living centers with 10 beds or less, one staff person in the facility is required during sleep hours. This staff person may sleep if the facility fire alarm is adequate to promptly alert staff, a staff call system is available, the staff bedroom has an egress window and the residents have the capability of prompt evacuation.

For assisted living centers with 11 to 16 beds, inclusive, one staff person who is awake is allowable during sleeping hours if the facility fire alarm is adequate to promptly alert staff, a staff call system is available, and the residents can promptly evacuate. Large centers must have a minimum of two staff members on duty at all times. In either center, staff should be available to meet scheduled and unscheduled needs of residents. The center must have a formal orientation program and an ongoing education program for all personnel.

When you visit the assisted living center, talk with as many staff as possible. The administrator is a good source, but also talk with the staff who provide individual care to the residents. Try to get a sense of who they are, if they enjoy their job and if they are personable to the residents.

Questions to Ask the Administrator or Staff

  • How many staff are employed by the center?
  • Will the residents have the same person helping them each day?
  • If a staff person calls in sick, are replacement staff available?
  • Have there been any staff resignations lately? Why?
  • Is there a call system from each resident’s room in case of emergency? If not, how do they plan to accommodate this need?
  • Is this facility approved to provide medication administration or any of the other specialty licenses?
  • Is the staff trained and appear to know what their job requires?
  • Can I hire a nurse privately to provide me services?
  • Can I ask for more assistance from staff on certain days?
  • Can I go to my church in the community?
  • Can I attend activities in the community?
  • Can I have an occasional meal in my own room?