Assisted Living in California

  • There are 7,391 licensed Assisted Living communities (RCFEs)
  • 180,281 seniors live in Assisted Living communities
  • Assisted Living provides more than 68,000 jobs in the state

How Assisted Living is Regulated

Assisted Living communities in California are licensed through the Department of Social Services as Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly (RCFEs), and are governed by a robust set of laws and regulations.

The regulatory framework is designed to promote resident independence and self-direction to the greatest extent possible in a residential, non-medical setting. Nearly every aspect of the Assisted Living experience is governed by state regulation or statute.

Trained for Success

Assisted Living communities share the common goal of providing excellent service, care, and support to their residents. In keeping with these goals, the extensive requirements established for Assisted Living staff and administrators are essential to the mental, physical, and emotional well-being of residents.

The required initial and ongoing education, testing, and training in comprehensive Assisted Living subjects ensure that staff and administrators are well-trained to meet the needs of residents.

According to a study commissioned by CALA, California’s well-trained staff members are essential to the mental, physical, and emotional well-being of residents.

Costs & Payments

The cost of Assisted Living varies depending upon level of need, amenities, apartment size, and location. Still, Assisted Living is among the least costly care options. According to a 2016 Genworth study, the California state average for an Assisted Living private room is $48,000 annually, or $4,000 per month.

Assisted Living in California is almost entirely private pay. Unlike health facilities or other home and community-based programs, MediCal does not cover Assisted Living except through a waiver program in 14 counties..

Informed Consumers

Current law requires admission agreements to disclose pricing structures and reasons rates may go up. Communities must also provide written disclosure of their prior rate increase history for the past three years. In addition, current law also requires disclosure of the reasons for a rate increase, along with the amount of the increase, at least 60 days in advance. These laws help ensure that consumers understand the cost of care and have adequate notice of changes.

The Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program can inform consumers with questions or concerns about care services. Consumers may also take advantage of information provided by local Community Care Licensing offices. A phone call will provide a verbal review of licensing history at a specific community that a consumer may be considering.

Read more about Assisted Living in California.