Homes Where The Elderly Can Thrive

The options for the elderly who can’t live alone but can’t afford assisted living are few. Either expensive around-the-clock care at home or a nursing home.

But Bill Thomas, a Harvard-educated geriatrician, has helped create the Green House Project, a new model for long term care. Its name suggests a nurturing environment where elders can thrive.

Founded in 2003, the Green House Project has spread to 27 states, according to a story in the New York Times.

Green House residents, whose care is financed by Medicaid, Medicare or private funds, live in cottages with private rooms and baths. They take part in food preparation and communal eating. They can eat when they want.

There are 167 Green House homes up and running, housing 1,735 residents. Another 108 homes are in development.

“No one wants to live in a nursing home,” Dr. Thomas says in a new documentary, “Homes on the Range.”

However, 1.5 million Americans now live in nursing homes. Thomas said he got the idea after he worked part-time in a nursing home in his 30s and thought that there had to be another way. He said he was struck by the tremendous loneliness of the residents in the home.

Elders who have declined in many ways at nursing homes often come back to thrive when they move into Green Houses, the story says.

If you have questions about elder law, feel free to call us for a consultation at (626) 696-3145.

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