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Adult Residential Care & Diabetes

By Heather Brown
January 13, 2017

Adult residential care homes are a popular choice for aging seniors or individuals with disabilities. They get the opportunity to live in a supportive environment that assists them with their needs daily and still maintain a sense of freedom. As an adult residential care home owner or administrator, you see and meet a variety of potential residents with unique stories and health concerns. Diabetes is common in these individuals and unfortunately not every home is able to provide the necessary care for diabetic residents.


9.3% of the U.S. population is diagnosed with diabetes and another 27.8% are undiagnosed according to the CDC. It is a disease that continues to rise year after year and has no cure. There are steps individuals can take to properly manage the impact Diabetes has on their health.


Adult residential care homes offer residents assistance with their daily living activities. Not every state allows these homes to provide diabetes and insulin management. Other homes simply don’t have the right staff or resources to properly provide this type of individualized care.

In the past, adult residential care homes were forced to refer residents elsewhere. Refused care leaves families feeling helpless. They know their loved one does not need skilled care, but they are unable to continue living on their own. Today, there are steps an adult residential care home can take to offer care to these residents.


  1. Contract service providers. Contract service providers visit adult residential care homes daily to check in and monitor residents with diabetes. These individuals have an agreement or contract with the resident instead of with your home. The RN’s that represent these providers often have the knowledge and experience necessary to help diabetic residents. As the care home owner, it is vital you require that provide proof of insurance and name your home as an additional insured on their policy.
  2. Understand diabetes.Take the time to research and understand the impact of diabetes. Make sure every member of your staff is properly educated and knowledgeable. The more individuals that understand the dangers to look for and the specific diabetic needs, the better quality care you can provide.
  3. Offer diabetic meal alternatives.Opening your doors to diabetic residents requires alternative meal solutions. Meet with a local nutritionist to review your existing meal plan and identify the specific areas that you need to update. Include the individual in charge of meal preparation so they understand why and when these changes need to be made.
  4. Encourage diabetes education. Encourage your staff to continue their diabetes education yearly by attending classes and workshops. Check with your local hospital to see if they offer diabetic care courses.

Each state’s laws and regulations for adult residential care homes vary. Contact your state licensing authority to find out if any of these steps are allowed by law in your state. Follow their guidelines and suggestions to offer quality care for diabetic residents.

Not every diabetic resident requires skilled care. Often times, they are ready to move into an adult residential care home because they no longer want to live alone. Opening the doors to these residents gives them the comfort and freedom they need in one location.

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