While assisted living facilities do provide 24-hour supervision for the elderly, the amount of supervision differs depending on the location, time of day and level of care. It’s also important to know that the number of caregivers on-site in assisted living communities is usually lower than what you’ll find in a nursing home or memory care facility. 

Staff-To-Resident Ratios Vary

Staff-to-resident ratios in residential care facilities vary. In some states, staffing levels in assisted living communities are regulated by the state, while in other states, the number of caregivers on duty at an assisted living facility is left to the discretion of each facility’s manager. 

When choosing an assisted living community for your loved one, be sure to inquire about the staff-to-resident ratios. It’s common for staffing levels to be highest during daytime hours when residents need help with ADLs, while far fewer staff are on-site during the evenings and at night. 

You’ll also want to find out which employees are included in the staff-to-resident ratio provided by each facility. Some assisted living communities only count their caregivers in this number, while other facilities list all on-site staff, including dietary, maintenance and administrative workers. 

Another important consideration when it comes to resident supervision is whether the staff team includes licensed medical professionals, such as licensed practical nurses and registered nurses. Facilities with on-site medical professionals may offer a range of care levels to accommodate seniors who need extra supervision and assistance. 

Technology-Assisted Supervision

Many assisted living facilities use a number of discrete, high-tech systems to supervise and support residents in a way that’s respectful and nonintrusive. 

Some communities have installed delayed-egress devices on exterior doors, which are designed to enhance the safety of residents who may be living with mild to moderate memory loss. It’s also common to find security cameras in the hallways and exterior areas of assisted living communities, as staff can use these cameras to monitor residents in a way that doesn’t impede privacy or independence. 

In-house medical alert systems are also widely used by assisted living facilities to ensure that residents can call for assistance from anywhere in the community, day or night. These systems usually include a wearable medical alert pendant or watch, as well as emergency pull cords in bathrooms and at each residents’ bedside.