Intergenerational living is the
new long-term care trend
Has your facility embraced age diversity?
Over the next year, healthcare experts anticipate a number of important changes coming to the skilled nursing industry. From the rise of regional facilities and the decline of national chains to the addition of hotel-like amenities over institutional models, many of these trends have been decades in the making. But among all the big movements, one seems the most pressing of all—and that’s a shiﬅ toward intergenerational living.
As baby boomers continue to age into their sixties and seventies, long-term care facilities are forced to diversify their offerings in order to appease a wider range of patients. Not only are people living longer, but today’s octogenarians and nonagenarians are nimbler than ever, staying healthy and active unlike their predecessors. There’s also a growing need for behavioral health and substance abuse services, which impact younger adults.
Keeping the generations connected
In the context of skilled nursing, intergenerational living refers to the mingling of patient populations based on age. But the movement also applies to the integration of programs designed to enhance interaction between seniors and younger groups, including school-aged children. To take advantage of all these beneficial opportunities, consider the following ways you might engage current and future patients:
Instead of completely separating the short- and long-term care areas of your facility, strive to create common spaces where all patients—regardless of age and need—may mingle and interact.
Many forward-thinking facilities have introduced childcare programs to their residents, allowing able-bodied men and women to supervise, mentor and play with workers’ children throughout the day.
In line with other telehealth advancements, administrators can encourage residents to use smartphones and tablets as tools for connecting with their families and the greater community.
If a permanent onsite program isn’t possible, reach out to local schools and colleges to inquire about establishing a visiting volunteer program, which proves an enriching experience for all