What Are Residential Care Facilities ~ Options In Denver, Colorado

Click here for a list of residential care facilities in the Denver metro area.

There are hundreds of residential care facilities located in the Denver metro area, sprinkled throughout some of the most popular neighborhoods. Drive by quickly, and you’d never even know that you passed a residential care home.

What Are Residential Care Facilities
Also known as “board and care,” most residential care facilities are traditional houses that have been converted to accommodate 4-12 residents who require assisted living and/or memory care.

Each resident has a private room (usually the size of a typical bedroom) or shared room, and a private bathroom or shared bathroom. The common areas, such as the living room, dining room, and yard, are used by all of the residents.

Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all cooked inside the home (sometimes with the residents participating), and snacks are available throughout the day.

The staff to resident ratio is generally high, which means that personalized attention can be given to each resident. At all times, there’s at least one staff member in the house.

Levels of Care In Residential Care Facilities In Denver
The levels of care in residential care facilities are regulated by each state, not at a federal level. In Colorado, there are three levels of care, and board and cares can be licensed for Level One, Level Two, and/or Level Three. Facilities that are licensed for Level Two and Level Three care can also accept Level One patients. Each resident’s level of care needs is assessed on a regular basis by the facility and/or a physician.

Below are typical levels of care in residential facilities in Colorado.
Level One Care: Residents live independently for the most part, only requiring occasional reminders, supervision, or assistance with activities.
Level Two Care: Residents require more significant support with some daily living activities, but minimal assistance with others.
Level Three Care: Residents need comprehensive, ongoing assistance with daily living activities.

Some residential care facilities may charge a different monthly rate, based on what level of care is provided. As the resident’s needs increase, the monthly cost can increase and/or the resident may ultimately need to move to another care setting.

Residential Care Facility Services In Denver
In residential care facilities, assistance with virtually every aspect of daily living can be provided, including:

  • administration of medications
  • assistance with dressing
  • assistance with eating
  • assistance with bathing
  • assistance with using the toilet and/or incontinence care
  • assistance with memory issues

How To Compare Residential Care Facilities In Denver
When choosing a residential care facility (for yourself or someone you love), here are some of the criteria you can compare:

  • cost
  • private pay or Medicaid
  • level of care (Level One, Level Two, or Level Three)
  • level of personal assistance provided
  • staff to resident ratio
  • sizes of rooms
  • shared rooms or private rooms
  • shared bathrooms or private bathrooms
  • outdoor spaces
  • types of activities for residents
  • services that are brought in for residents (e.g. physicians, podiatrists, hairdressers, etc.)
  • transportation (group and/or individual)
  • pet policies
  • smoking policies
  • types of residents (e.g. all women, all men, people younger than age 60, etc.)
  • level of independence of most of the residents (e.g. high-functioning or low-functioning)
  • background and experience of the owner and administrator of the facility
  • location in the Denver metro area (general area and neighborhood)
  • annual health surveys by the state health department and reports of occurrences and complaints

Residential Care Facilities Are Licensed And Regulated By The State Of Colorado
All residential care facilities are licensed and regulated by the state of Colorado, through the Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPE). The regulations are designed to ensure quality, uniform care across the 700+ residential care facilities that are located in the Denver metro area and throughout Colorado.

Residential Care Facilities vs Assisted Living Facilities In Denver
Residential care facilities are a sub-category of assisted living facilities, and as the name implies, they’re located in residential homes. The larger assisted living facilities can have upwards of 100 residents in them. While there’s more opportunity for interaction (and often more amenities and activities) with other residents in these larger facilities, the care may not be as personalized.

Residential Care Facilities vs Memory Care Facilities In Denver
Some residential care facilities offer memory care (for Alzheimer’s, dementia, and memory loss issues), but unless otherwise designated, they’re not memory care facilities. A traditional residential care home will typically have residents with a variety of health issues and care needs. Whereas, a memory care facility would only have residents with memory issues, and would most likely be a secured, locked facility.

Click to read about the top 10 reasons to move into a residential care facility.

Other Resources For Senior Living In Denver
Below are resources that describe other senior living options:
What Is Independent Living
What Is Assisted Living
What Are Nursing Homes
What Is Memory Care
What Are Multi-Level Care Communities
What Are Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs)
What Is Hospice Care
What Are In-Home Care Agencies
What Are Senior Advisors