Adult day centers (ADCs) offer services directed at older adults with physical or cognitive impairments. They offer a planned, professional day care program that promotes social and health well-being. The center may be privately or publicly owned, not-profit or for-profit. According to the National Adult Day Services Association, there are over 4,000 adult day care centers across the United States.
There are essentially three types of ADCs:
- Adult Day Social Care – provides opportunities for social engagement through planned activities, meals and recreational opportunities
- Adult Day Health Services – provides social opportunities with medical services like medical monitoring and therapies through licensed health professionals
- Dementia Specific Adult Day Care – provides social and health services specifically to older adults with Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementias in what are typically secure (locked) environments
The elder may benefit from:
- Social engagement with peers
- Delayed admission to a long-term care facility
- Personal care assistance: bathing, toileting, etc.
- Medical monitoring and therapies
- Appropriate exercise activities
- Nutritious meals and snacks
- Planned activities
The caregiver may benefit from:
- The ability to work full or part-time
- Respite from caregiving demands
- Cost effective care
- Support groups and counseling
In most cases the person attending must be able to ambulate on his/her own (not wheelchair bound). If the individual will have the adult day care costs covered by private insurance or a public benefit, he/she must be assessed to qualify for the service.