About Assisted Living in Alabama

While parts of the state may have a higher than average sales tax, Alabama’s income tax is fairly low, and social security and military, civil service, and state and local government pensions are tax exempt. The cost of living is significantly lower than the national average, and homeowners over the age of 65 are not required to pay property taxes.

What Options are Available for Assisted Living?

In the state of Alabama, an assisted living facility not only provides special care needs for residence, but it also provides assistance with activities of daily living (ADLs).

All facilities are required to comply with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) regulations, requiring sprinkler systems and supervised fire alarm systems to meet Life Safety Code requirements.

What are the Alzheimer’s Requirements for Assisted-Living Facilities in Alabama?

Only licensed specialty care facilities can admit residents with severe cognitive impairments. Facilities without the proper licensing are forbidden from marketing themselves as dementia or Alzheimer’s care facilities.

A thorough screening is required to evaluate the need for specialty care, including screening clinical history, mental status, aphasia, geriatric depression, physical function, and behavior. The state also requires specific scores on the Physical Self Maintenance Scale and Behavior Screen form in order for a resident to move into a specialty care facility.

What Training is Required for Assisted Living Facility Staff?

In both assisted living and specialty care facilities all staff having contact with residents are required to complete initial training and refresher training as needed. Specialty care staff must also complete the Dementia Education and Training series on dealing with patients with dementia as well as 6 hours continued education each year.

Is an Assessment Required Before Move-In?

Residents must undergo a medical examination so that a personal care plan can be developed. The Physical Self Maintenance and Behavior Screening assessments are also required to determine if the individual will be able to live in a specialty care assisted living facility.

What Care is Available in an Assisted Living Facility?

  • Bathing and oral hygiene.
  • Grooming.
  • Health supervision.
  • Medical attention and nursing services.

Home health services and hospice care may be provided by certified and/or licensed agencies.

How is Medication Managed?

Residents have the option of self-administering medications or receiving assistance from facility staff members. All medication that must be kept by the facility for administration must be unit-dose packaged. A registered or licensed practical nurse or medical practitioner will administer medication to residents suffering from dementia in specialty care facilities.

What are the Bathroom Requirements for an AssistedLiving Facility?

Bathrooms must have at least 1 bathtub or shower for every 8 residents, and 1 sink and toilet for every 6.

What are the Move-In or Move-Out Requirements?

Assisted living facilities can only admit residents whose needs can be met by the facility, and they may not admit or retain residents who:

  • Require restraints, confinement, or have limitations on leaving the facility.
  • Do not understand the medication system used by the facility.
  • Have chronic health issues that require extensive medical care or daily professional observation.

A resident who requires skilled nursing or medical care or who is several cognitively impaired must be discharged. However, if a resident needs short-term skilled nursing or medical care for less than 90 days, or if the resident needs hospice assistance for a condition other than dementia, arrangements can be made with the assisted living facility. The facility is responsible for seeing that the properly-licensed care is delivered to the resident.

Is an Assisted Living Facility Covered by Medicaid in the State of Alabama?

No. Currently, Alabama does not have a Medicaid waiver program for assisted living or specialty care

Who can I contact for more information?

Department of Public Health, Bureau of Health Provider Standards
Kelley Mitchell
(334) 206-5575