Congregate Care

Four housing concepts have evolved that respond to older adults seeking, or who need, alternatives to their current living environment. They include, in order of increasing care requirements, independent living, congregate care, assisted living and nursing care.

Independent living and congregate care have often been used to describe the same type of housing. Independent living (in its purest form) is shelter only without services. Often, this type of housing is referred to as independent living with optional services. Congregate care provides shelter and services such as meals and housekeeping. Congregate care is provided typically in an apartment type building with double-loaded corridors. There are ample common areas for congregate meals and for both physical and leisure activities.