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Nov 17, 2022

Assisted Living Communities (no longer preferable to call them Assisted Living Facilities, as we learned on the podcast) are…what, exactly?  That’s the central question on today’s podcast.  The problem is the tremendous heterogeneity in services offered and quality of care.  If you’ve seen one Assisted Living Community you’ve seen one Assisted Living Community. 

To address this question, we talk with Sheryl Zimmerman, author of a recent study in JAMA Network Open that used a Delphi process to ascertain what experts thought were the essential services an Assisted Living Community should offer to residents.  The experts settled on a range of key services, from more palliative care focused (e.g. end of life care and advance care planning) to more geriatrics focused (e.g. toenail trimming) to things in between (e.g. staff training in person centered care).  The problem, as Kenny Lam and Ken Covinsky, authors of an accompanying editorial, state on the podcast: there is an inherent tension between the motives of the corporations that own most Assisted Living Facilities (profit) and the ideal services offered in Assisted Living Facilities.  

We additionally firmly establish that the song How to Save a Life by the Fray was a product of the aughts (2005, to be exact), not the 90’s ):


-@AlexSmithMD (still on Twitter at present)