The “Alphabet Soup” of Senior Living: What Do All the Acronyms Mean?

The “Alphabet Soup” of Senior Living: What Do All the Acronyms Mean?

When you’re researching senior living, you quickly discover there is a whole world of information you didn’t know! And, it’s usually hard to understand while also being very important to know.

One of the most common causes for confusion is all of the acronyms that are used – what does CBRF mean and why are ADLs important?!

To help alleviate the confusion, we dug up some of the most common acronyms you’ll run into while considering senior living options and explained what they stand for and, more importantly, what they mean:

ADLs – Activities of Daily Living

Activities of Daily Living are tasks people perform every day that include bathing, toileting, dressing, grooming, and eating. Adults in senior care communities often need help with some or all of the ADLs. Supportive Living, Assisted Living, and Skilled Nursing living options provide assistance with ADLs, as well as medication management, housework, laundry, and meal preparation. Assistance and care level is determined on an as-needed basis.

ALF – Assisted Living Facility

An Assisted Living facility is made up of private apartments that provide a variety of services to older residents who do not yet need comprehensive or ongoing medical care. ALFs are state-regulated and emphasize privacy, independence, and personal choice. Services may include meals, personal care, medication assistance, limited supervision, organized activities, and limited nursing care. The two types of Assisted Living settings are Community Based Residential Facility (CBRF) and Residential Care Apartment Complex (RCAC).

CBRF – Community Based Residential Facility

Community Based Residential Facilities (CBRFs) are state-licensed Assisted Living facilities. CBRFs provide health care services above room and board such as assistance with bathing, dressing, toileting, mobility, nutrition, medications, health monitoring, safety and security, socialization and companionship in an environment that promotes and enhances independence. Luther Manor offers CBRF services, more commonly simply known as Assisted Living, in both our Wauwatosa and Mequon communities.

CCRC – Continuing Care Retirement Community

A Continuing Care Retirement Community (also known as a Life Plan Community) houses a variety of living arrangements for residents together with medical care, full dining accommodations, and educational, recreational, and social activities. CCRCs provide a range of services and living options in a care continuum, which enables seniors to move dependent on care needs without relocating to a different organization. Luther Manor is a Life Plan Community.

LTC – Long Term Care

Long Term Care can refer to any kind of senior care provided to aging individuals, regardless of the environment in which it takes place. Senior care communities, in-home services, and adult day program services may all be part of a long term care plan, though you’ll typically hear LTC as referring to Skilled Nursing services.

RCAC – Residential Care Apartment Complex

Sometimes known as Supportive Living, RCAC services take place in independent apartments where residents receive some assisted living services for an additional fee. RCACs are stat-certified and stipulate residents can receive up to 28 hours a week of different services, which include housekeeping, transportation to access community services and recreational activities, assistance with ADLs, nursing services, and access to emergency assistance 24 hours a day. Luther Manor offers Supportive Living services at our Wauwatosa Life Plan Community.

SNF – Skilled Nursing Facility

Senior care communities that provide comprehensive assistance with activities of daily living, as well as 24-hour medical support are known as Skilled Nursing Facilities. SNFs provide a variety of social activities, as well as meals, medication administration, health visits, and physical and occupational therapy. Luther Manor’s Wauwatosa Life Plan Community includes a SNF as a part of our continuum of care.

Find More Information

To further help you during your senior living search, Luther Manor created a downloadable Guide to Aging Care & Services that includes these acronyms, resources for seniors, and more. Click the button below to access.