Board & care homes offer the same type of services as larger assisted living communities, but service is provided in a much smaller, residential setting. The intimate setting afforded by board and care homes allows for closer oversight of residents and comes with a higher staff to resident ratio. They share the same assisted living license as the larger assisted living communities. Both are regulated and monitored by the Florida Agency for Healthcare Administration (AHCA).
In Northeast Florida, board and care homes operate in residential neighborhoods and generally have a limit of six to eight residents. Some operators convert existing houses into board and care homes. Other homes are more purpose-built. Driving down the street, you probably would not even know that a house is operating as a board and care provider. From the outside, the home looks just like any other on the street, except for ADA compliant entrances and walkways.
Board and care homes offer both private and shared rooms. Not all homes have private bathrooms. Rooms with private baths can be more expensive than rooms with shared baths.
The benefit of a board and care home is the small size and higher staff to resident ratio. In the greater Jacksonville area, good homes have at least two caregivers for every six residents. A more fragile resident or one needing close 24-hour supervision benefits from this type of environment since it provides the closest thing to having a private caregiver without the cost.
Homes have different arrangements for staffing. There seems to be an equal split of board and care homes with on-site, live-in caregivers and those that have caregivers working in shifts. In a few instances, the owners of the home live on premises and have designated certain rooms for the care of residents, perhaps using the downstairs for the residents and maintaining their own quarters on the second floor.
Who Should Live at a Board and Care?
Board and care homes are most appropriate for residents needing a lot of hands-on physical care or those who do not benefit from the upscale dining rooms, movie theaters and activities of larger communities. In the Northeast Florida area, the majority of board and care homes cater to residents with mid to late stage dementia and conditions that make the individual no longer able to ambulate.
How Much do Board & Care Homes Cost?
Board and care homes are usually less expensive than the larger assisted living communities. Whereas the larger assisted living communities charge a monthly base rate plus a separate monthly rate for care, board and care pricing is usually all-inclusive of care. Prices may be as low as $3,000 monthy for a shared room all the way up to $8,000 monthly for a private room with private bath.
There are quite a few board and care homes in the Greater Jacksonville area. Knowing which ones are the better ones is key. Don’t try to figure it out alone! Your friends at Assisted Living Locators of Northeast Florida can help you find the best place for your particular situation.