Residents rate Ohio senior-living centers
Over half the facilities in region score above state average in survey.
An estimated one in five Ohioans will be 65 or older in 2020 — a dramatic increase since the turn of the century, and one that underscores the importance of oversight in senior living options.
In a statewide survey released last week, nursing homes and assisted-living facilities in our nine-county region fared well. More than half scored above the state average in a resident satisfaction survey that drew on the feedback of nearly 50,000 seniors.
Residents of senior-living facilities answered 45 questions in confidence in the Ohio
Department of Aging survey, which was conducted from August to December 2015. Their feedback indicated that facilities can improve by building stronger relationships between staff and residents; make staff more available at key times; provide better food; and resolve issues in a more timely manner.
Karl Chow of the Miami University Scripps Gerontology Center said “satisfaction is pretty high” among Ohio seniors living in these facilities, the number of which will increase in the coming years.
“The need for services like nursing homes and assisted care is going to go up,” said Chow. “Along with the needs for those services is going to be a need for a way to evaluate facilities. That’s where the value of these surveys comes in.”
The statewide average score for assisted-living centers, or ALCs, was 91.7 (out of a possible 100). For nursing homes, the average score was 87.
Greenville is home to the region’s highest-ranking assisted-living facility, Village Green Health Campus. Its score of 98.89 was the seventh-best among Ohio’s 635 surveyed facilities.
The region’s highest-ranking nursing home, Brethren Retirement Community, also is in Greenville. It scored 96.09, good for 13th in the state. National Church Residences Legacy Village in Xenia ranked 15th.
There are about 960 registered nursing homes in Ohio.
The lowest-scoring ALC in the region was Eaton Grand Manor, which ranked No. 626 in the state. Pristine Senior Living and Post-Acute Care in Dayton was No. 620.
The region’s lowest-scoring nursing homes were Wellington Manor in Hamilton (940th) and Residence at Kensington Place in Middletown (938th).
According to the Department of Aging, an estimated 80,000 residents reside in the state’s nursing homes.
Jean Thompson, executive director of the Ohio Assisted Living Association, estimated that about 35,000 Ohioans reside in assisted-living centers. She said the average age of their residents is between 83 and 85.
Sycamore Glen in Miamisburg had a score of 97.53, good for No. 27 in the state. Oak Creek Terrace in Kettering was another well-regarded ALC, at No. 37.
“Between those ages, people are often dealing with a lot of life difficulties, so I think the fact that they replied so positively is pretty phenomenal,” Thompson said. “People talk with their pocketbooks. When you think about the growth of assisted living, I would say it’s a form of longterm assistance and care that our population really wants.”
Oakwood Village had the highest scores in both categories among Springfield facilities. It ranked 74th in the state among nursing homes and 75th among ALCs.
The survey, which was conducted by Vital Research LLC, under contract with the state, included questions about activities, freedom, staff performance and food. The first question was: “Do you have enough to do here?” and one of the last was: “Would you recommend this facility to a family member or friend?”
Answer choices were: Yes, always; yes, sometimes; no, hardly ever; no, never.
“Using data from this and similar surveys, Ohio has developed several quality-improvement projects to help facilities develop processes, policies, services and activities that enhance the resident experience,” said Beverley Laubert, the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman.
Ohio nursing homes are required to participate in at least one quality-improvement project every two years to keep their licenses active, according to the report.
Miami’s Scripps Gerontology Center, which focuses on aging-related research, will in May and June conduct the state’s satisfaction survey of family members of nursing-home and assisted-living residents.
Results from that survey will be available in early 2017.
“(Centers) can use the survey internally to improve the quality of their facilities, but the greater value they have is they basically serve as a consumer guide,” Chow said. “Ohio’s population is aging quickly. The concern is whether the state’s ability to provide for that population will be able to keep up.”