Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph. D.


Urban and Public Affairs

Committee Chair

Bourassa, Steven C., 1957-

Author's Keywords

Assisted living; Nursing; Personal care; Affordable housing; Aging in place; Activities in daily living


Life care communities--Kentucky--Louisville; Congregate housing--Kentucky--Louisville; Older people--Housing--Kentucky--Louisville


As the older adult population in the United States continues its accelerated growth, there is a growing concern about the long-term care options for these elders. While nursing homes are no longer desirable and costly for federal and state governments, viable alternatives are being sought to meet this need. The development and rapid expansion of the numbers of assisted living communities have grown as older adults, family caregivers and government bureaucrats are looking for lower cost options. How beneficial are assisted living communities for the older adults that live in them? Most older adults seek to avoid multiple moves to meet their care needs and desire to age in place within a residential setting. This research examines assisted living communities (ALCs) in the Louisville, Kentucky to explore their benefit to older adults and to examine their ability to accommodate residential aging in place. The analysis consisted of examining four characteristics of the ALCs which are personal services, meals and social interaction, community policies and the physical configuration. The findings of this study conclude that assisted living communities provide significant benefits to older adults by the provision of supportive services to help in areas of activities of daily living. There are some assisted living communities that are more able to accommodate residents to age in place based on the provision of necessary services, highly personalized service and reasonable accommodations that are needed to help with physical decline. Finally, the assisted living communities operate along the continuum of care and facilitate residents to move to more intensive care when their supportive services needs are beyond the capacity of the ALC.