There has been an issue that continuing care retirement communities (CCRC) have been trying to figure out since they existed; how to handle the interaction between the various groups of residents ranging from healthy, independent living residents to the less healthy in assisted living and nursing. One of the more recent situations involved the River Terrace Dining Room at Harbor’s Edge CCRC.
The River Terrace Dining Room is an exceptional example of what a dining room in a ccrc can be; residents brought their families, had holiday dinners there, and met lifelong friends. Husbands and wives in different levels of the facility could meet for dinner and still share those romantic moments. Kids and Grand-kids could hang out with their Grandparents without feeling like they were in an institutional dining facility. The residents took pride in the location and the food that was served, welcoming outsiders to experience where they lived. But recently, that all changed.
Harbor’s Edge had the fortune to be almost to capacity in the independent living housing, at about 95% occupancy. This brought problems to the dining room, which was experiencing overcrowding due to it’s popularity. To alleviate the problem, Harbor’s Edge opted to only allow those in independent living to dine in the restaurant, leaving those in assisted living and nursing to eat in their smaller dining rooms. This had the effect of separating friends and couples who lived in different levels, as well as eliminating the option of allowing family to dine with their loved ones.
The residents aren’t happy and neither are the families, however, residents were also displeased with having reservations being turned away and how busy the restaurant was. Find the full story, as well as other examples of previous discrimination cases, on The New York Times please click here.
What would you do in this situation? Do you have a creative way to keep your facility from overcrowding but still maintain resident satisfaction? With the continued growth of the senior population, as well as the aging baby boomers, this could be a real problem with many facilities out there. Do you think this is discrimination, or do you think it was a good plan by the organization?
We would love to hear your feedback!