Study Counts Nation's Adult Day Centers, Comes up Short of What's Needed

Adult day services census

For two years beginning in November 2000, staff at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine conducted a national study of adult day services. The staff had directed the Partners in Caregiving: The Adult Day Services Program, a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF).

Key Findings

  • The current number of adult day centers — 3,407 — falls far short of what is needed to serve the needs of the population of adults with chronic, debilitating illnesses and their family caregivers. The study estimates that the U.S. population base can support 8,520 adult day centers, with 5,415 more centers needed.
  • Average overall enrollment in adult day centers was 42; average daily attendance was 25. The average length of stay was two years.
  • The top three problems of adult day centers were adequate funding, recruiting/retaining staff and maintaining census/attendance.

Funding

RWJF provided $401,083 for the study of adult day services.