Landing the No. 1 spot this year on Provider’s Top 40 Largest Assisted Living Companies list is Brentwood, Tenn.-based Brookdale Senior Living, replacing Emeritus, which occupied the top spot last year for the first time.
Emeritus Senior Living, Seattle, moved down just one place to No. 2 this year, while Sunrise Senior Living, McLean, Va., made the No. 3 slot and is followed by Atria Senior Living, Louisville, Ky.

The remaining Top 10 contenders are largely the same as last year, with the exception of Dallas-based Capitol Senior Living, which jumped up from No. 14 last year to push out Life Care Services, The Woodlands, Texas, for No. 10 this year.

Optimism Continues

The expansion of ancillary services and specialty care among assisted living providers continues at a steady pace this year, with companies citing, as they did last year, an optimistic outlook for the sector.

Emeritus’ 2011 annual report is once again bullish on assisted living. The company believes that the sector will continue to benefit from several trends, including changing family dynamics, in which “the geographical separation of senior family members from their adult children correlates with the geographic mobility of the U.S. population. As a result, many families that may have provided care to senior family members in their homes are now unable to do so,” says the report.
Also cited is a “supply/demand imbalance.” The senior population, Emeritus contends, continues to grow significantly, while the supply of assisted living units is not growing at a similarly rapid rate.

“We believe that high construction costs, costs and availability of capital and credit, and the cost of liability insurance for smaller operators have constrained the growth in the supply of assisted living facilities,” the report says.

Innovation Still In Play

Integral Senior Living, Carlsbad, Calif., will continue to implement Generations, a program based on person-centered care, while providing engaging and stimulating environments through dining and activity programs for those with memory loss.
Both Capitol Senior Living and Ridgeline Management, Eugene, Ore., are implementing elder-directed care “inspired by the Eden Alternative.”
Among the 40 providers on this list, 24 also offer nursing home care and 15 provide post-acute care. Not surprisingly, the bulk of the companies on this year’s Top 40 also offer memory or dementia care services.
For 35 of this year’s Top 40 largest companies, independent living is an ancillary business option, compared with 33 last year. In addition, 15 companies this year offer pharmacy services, while that number was 12 last year. Up from 17 last year, 21 companies now offer hospice care to residents, while 16 offer home care.
This year’s lineup represents a resident capacity of more than 208,000 and more than 2,340 buildings.