Admission & Eligibility
Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs) have specific requirements for admission. The applicant's age, health status and functional ability, as well as financial situation, are the most basic considerations. If you or your loved one is considering a CCRC, there are many things that you will want to investigate to ensure that it will provide the lifestyle that you want and that it will remain affordable, even if your health situation should change.
In Maryland, the minimum age to enter a CCRC is 60 (one spouse may be younger). Some communities require that the applicant be at least age 65 at the time of admission.
Most communities require that an applicant be able to function independently in all activities of daily living at the time of admission. Applicants must have a physical examination prior to acceptance in order to establish their health care needs and functional status. Sometimes an applicant can wait too long before making the decision to enter a CCRC; if one needs help to function in the independent living section of the CCRC, many facilities will decline to accept the person for admission.
CCRCs set their own fees. Most, but not all, charge an entrance fee, as well as monthly fees (which may increase over time). Fees are dependent on the type of contract signed and the size of the apartment. Fees may increase if the resident needs to move to the assisted living or nursing care section of the community.
If you or your loved one meets the medical and financial eligibility criteria, the next step is to find the right CCRC for you. Each CCRC has its own unique character. Before making a choice, evaluate several communities; look at the types of contracts available, range of prices, activities provided, financial health of the community, location and other specific services of interest to you or your loved one.
Once the CCRC of choice is located, the applicant needs to place his or her name on the waiting list or proceed directly to the application process.
- Waiting (Priority) List
Placing one's name on a waiting list does not mean the individual is accepted by the CCRC. A final determination of eligibility is not made until one reaches the top of the list.
- Application Forms
One must provide demographic, medical, financial and other information as part of the admission process. A fee is required at the time of application.
- Financial Assessment
The CCRC will complete a financial assessment of the applicant to ensure he or she can afford the initial fees and the ongoing cost of care.