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New Changes Ahead for Continuing Care Retirement Communities

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Earlier this month the results of an initiative to rename and re-position the category name Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC) was announced during the LeadingAge Annual Meeting and EXPO in Boston. The “Project Name Storm” initiative led by LeadingAge and Mather Lifeways concluded the recommendation that owners and operators of CCRCs use the name “Life Plan Community.”

According to LeadingAge President and CEO Larry Minnix “It became clear that the name CCRC no longer did an adequate job of creating the best perception among tomorrow’s older adults, at the core of the decision to move to a community is having the right plan for what the next stage of life has to offer. We feel the ‘Life Plan Community’ name encompasses that very well.”

During the process of the initiative, feedback was solicited from corporate and industry leaders, and focus groups were conducted in seven distinct markets. The goal of these groups was to understand how the CCRC name is perceived and the results indicated the latter. The groups concluded the phrase“continuing care” suggests a setting that involves older adults being cared for, rather than a setting that also fosters growth and new experiences. With these results 84% of future consumers age 65 and younger chose a name other than CCRC for the category name.

With these new statistics and recommendations what does this mean for you as a CCRC operator? Will you adopt the change? With a name change implemented into your community this could mean edits to your marketing tools, online presence and the copy on your website. How will this affect online search, if consumers are looking for CCRCs? How long will it take for consumers to adapt to the change? What about the future consumers in your markets? Even though the focus groups were represented from seven distinct markets, what if the consumers in your market don’t respond well? Tell us what you think about the recommendation for CCRCs to use the name “Life Plan Community” and if your community will follow suit?