Consumer Satisfaction in Long Term Care: State Initiatives in Nursing Homes and Assisted Living FacilitiesINTRODUCTION“By 2020, the number of elderly Americans needing long-term residential care is expected to double from 7 million to 14 million. ” (http: //www. news. uiuc. edu/news/06/1101asstliving. html, para 3)The aging population of the United States results into an intensive need for a long-term care at present and more in the future. Moreover, studies prove that the aging America is yet live longer than expected. (http: //www. longtermcareliving. com/planning_ahead/assisted/ assisted1.htm, para 1 & Wilson, 2000) This demand for all kinds of long-term care services is further augmented by the aging Baby Boomers who were makes up the majority of the aging population in America.
In their retirement years, this group who once have headed the companies or travelled the globe will need assistance as they grow older with regards to their daily needs. (http: //www. helpguide. org/elder/assisted_living_facilities. htm, para 1) Childless elders who do not expect anybody to watch over them and assist them when they grow older will make up the larger proportion of the elderly who will soon avail the services offered by long-term care services. Since one-fifth of the Baby Boomers are childless, they are most likely to make the majority of the clients of long-term care services in the future who has the tendency to live alone.
Childless elders like the Baby Boomers are additional challenges for the long-term care system such that it will be necessary for them to develop effective methods to identify and target frail elders who live alone, especially those who are low-income minorities in order to assure these elders who lack informal support to receive adequate services. (Choi, et al, 1998)The longer life expectancy brought about by the advances in medical science, greater access to health care, improved nutrition, and better living conditions provides room for long-term care services to become the fastest growing service institution nowadays.
Seniors aging 85 years old and over are the fastest-growing sectors of the society. (Wilson, 2000) In the next 20 years, 65-year olds and older are expected to grow by fifty percent in the United States. “In California alone, there will be about 2.6 million more seniors in 20 years. This will give the state approximately 6.3 million retirees, far out-pacing the national average.
In addition, the life expectancy age of females has increased from 71.7 years to 79.1 years and males from 65.6 years to 73.1 years. ” Therefore, the demand for more healthcare related services such as the long-term care services taking care of the elderly is also increased. Longer life expectancy would mean more of the Americans will be utilizing these services for a longer period of time as well. (http: //www. calregistry. com/housing/alfs. htm, para )Another factor that resulted from the different scientific advancements that led to longer life expectancy is an increases survival rates for those who were born with serious disabilities and others who have been permanently disabled later in their lives.
Acquiring these diseases would require them assistance with their daily activities in order for them to continue life. Their inability to perform these common tasks such as bathing, dressing, preparing meals, and taking medications demands for a need to have somebody to attend to them most of their times. Some of whom who need assistantship are those who had diseases such as Alzheimer’s, diabetes or arthritis.
These diseases prevent them from performing even the most common tasks therefore they would resort to finally availing the services offered by the different long-term care institutions. (Wilson, 2000)