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Handbook of Social Work in Health and Aging$
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Barbara Berkman and Sarah D'Ambruoso

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195173727

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195173727.001.0001

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Adult Foster Care and Adult Family Care

Adult Foster Care and Adult Family Care

Chapter:
(p.685) 62 Adult Foster Care and Adult Family Care
Source:
Handbook of Social Work in Health and Aging
Author(s):

Vera Prosper

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195173727.003.0062

This chapter discusses adult foster care (AFC) programs. AFC homes, as a community-integrated, small, family-based housing and care option, can satisfy the goals of several confluent happenings: (a) The U.S. federal court decision in Olmstead v. L.C. requires that people of all ages with disabilities be housed in the most appropriate integrated (into the community) setting possible; (b) the preference of most people is to live in non-institutionalized, home-like living environments; and (c) public agencies are promoting the expansion of community-based housing and care options as a means of containing the growth in long-term care costs. Among the strengths of AFC are its informality, sociability, spontaneity, and familism; the meaningful role AFC provides for the provider; and the greater level of integration of this option into the surrounding community, because the provider's private home is less obtrusive than multi-unit housing or institutions. Weaknesses include the difficulty of monitoring these small homes, which are dispersed throughout the community; the widely varying staff-to-resident ratios among homes; and the inconsistent level of professionalism of the providers.

Keywords:   adult foster care, adult family care, aging, elderly, social work practice

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