DHEC Celebrates National Assisted Living Week

National Assisted Living Week, observed September 12-18, is held to recognize the hard work, compassion and care involved in operating assisted living facilities and the residents they serve.

An Assisted Living Facility (ALF) is also known as a Community Residential Care Facility (CRCF) in South Carolina. There are currently 480 licensed CRCFs in the state.

“Compassion, Community, Caring” is this year’s theme for National Assisted Living Week. The COVID-19 pandemic has created challenges for CRCFs, but DHEC has continuously aided the facilities despite the many changes that have occurred during the pandemic.

“As I reflect on the 2021 theme for National Assisted Living Week ‘Compassion, Community, Caring,’ those three words have been a true reflection of this past year during this pandemic and working with facilities,” said JoMonica Taylor, DHEC Director of the Residential Facilities Division in the Bureau of Community Care. “Compassion was shown as we all navigated through a year of the unknown that was rapidly changing before our eyes. The community came together during this time with one common goal in mind: to protect and keep our most vulnerable population safe. Caring was reflected as other’s needs were put before theirs and sacrifices were made.”

Representatives of two of the state’s Assisted Living and CRCF Associations echoed similar sentiments.

“As 2021 continues to present its challenges, SCALA is pleased to celebrate the ‘Compassion, Community, Caring’ theme for assisted-living week,” said Melody Bailey, Executive Director of the South Carolina Assisted Living Association. “We recognize the enormous challenges residents, staff, and families have experienced during the pandemic and we are committed to working with communities and agencies such as DHEC, to create a safer environment for seniors. Providing quality, compassionate care and a sense of community in the safest setting possible is our goal for this year and beyond.”

Sarah Doctor-Greenwade, President of Sincere Home Owners United Together thanked DHEC for the assistance provided during the pandemic, which demonstrates one of the agency’s core values which is Embracing Service.

“As President of SHOUT let me first thank the DHEC for their support during our annual conference in ensuring CRCF administrators have up-to-date information that is required and greatly needed,” Sarah Doctor-Greenwade said. “In the past year, there have been many changes in the way CRCFs care for the residents they serve with the COVID-19 pandemic. DHEC helped many facilities with much-needed PPE and updated information on testing requirements, policy changes and ensuring the health and safety of vulnerable adults we serve during these trying times. Without their support, most facilities were not able to afford the PPE equipment that was greatly needed.”

DHEC’s vision is Healthy people living in Healthy communities, and CRCFs are a direct contributor to the agency’s vision. DHEC thanks CRCFs for their service and values the staff, residents and stakeholders who continuously advocate for the services they provide.

“Assisted livings are a staple in our community. They provide a safe and secure environment for our seniors,” JoMonica said. “As we observe this week, DHEC celebrates the residents, staff, loved ones, associations and communities. DHEC expresses our appreciation to everyone for their dedication to the wellbeing of the seniors and keeping the facilities a clean, safe and healthy environment.”

DHEC encourages the public to learn more about CRCFs and their importance. By doing so, we demonstrate the agency strategy of Education and Engagement.

The state’s Community Residential Care Facilities can be found using DHEC’s Find a Facility map.

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