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What are the Basic Differences between a Skilled Nursing Facility versus Assisted Living (RCFE)?

What are the Basic Differences between a Skilled Nursing Facility versus Assisted Living (RCFE)?

What are the basic difference between a Skilled Nursing Facility v. Assisted Living Facility aka RCFE

    There are primary differences between an RCFE (aka Assisted Living) and a Skilled Nursing Facility. We are hopeful the content herein will help you differentiate between the two.

    RCFE – Assisted Living

    A Residential Care Facility for the Elderly (RCFE) is the name in California’s Title 22 regulations that refers to a “housing arrangement chosen voluntarily” by a resident or his guardian or other responsible party, where 75% of the residents are 60+, where care and supervision is provided to the residents in a manner consistent with their particular needs. In the vernacular, it is often called assisted living or supportive housing. It is non-medical in nature, and is considered a “housing alternative” that provides care. It is not a medical facility and is therefore not classified as a health-care facility. The disparity is that despite these parameters, residents may be accepted and retained exhibiting many types of serious and chronic medical conditions.

    SNF – Skilled Nursing Facility

    By contrast, a Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) is a facility licensed by California’s Department of Public Health, licensed to provide 24/7 skilled professional medical services. It is a considered a medical facility, not a housing alternative.

If your loved one is a resident in assisted living, keep a close watch on that person, and the other residents in the facility for that matter. Watch for unexplained bruising, skin tears, decubitus ulcers and other tell-tale signs. And remember it’s not just physical abuse (slapping, hitting), psychological abuse (yelling, screaming), it is also NEGLECT. Neglect can manifest as bed sores on the back, buttocks, heels, and on elbows.

– from Steven Peck, Senior Attorney at Peck Law Group

About the Author

Attorney Steven Peck has been practicing law since 1981. A former successful business owner, Mr. Peck initially focused his legal career on business law. Within the first three years, after some colleagues and friend’s parents endured nursing home neglect and elder abuse, he continued his education to begin practicing elder law and nursing home abuse law.


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