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Assisted Living

Berkeley Parents Network > Advice > Elders > Housing for Seniors > Assisted Living

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Continuing care retirement communities in the area

Feb 2012

Does anyone have any experience with continuing care retirement communities in the area? I am beginning the process of finding a place for my elderly parents, as they plan the big move from their home in Florida to the Bay Area to be close to me. Any recommendations or advice would be most welcome.

My personal experience is primarily with Piedmont Gardens. My father lived in the nursing home section of Piedmont Gardens 2002-2008. They are located adjacent to Piedmont Avenue, have a active community, van rides to museums, even cultural events like luaus & concerts on-site. I felt it was a very good placement for him overall; I saw that the nurses there stopped to visit with him & gave him personal attention, which had a major impact on his quality of life.

I also toured Mercy (Catholic-oriented), Salem Lutheran, and the Jewish Home in San Francisco (not sure if it's a CCRC) & was impressed, but don't know anyone who lived there.

You'll find that your own involvement will make a difference no matter where your father goes. --Good Luck

Assisted living for elderly parents

July 2011

I am trying to bring out my elderly parents, and have been looking at assisted living places. Dad needs more help with daily care such as bathing, foley catheter, etc. Mom is more mobile. I have looked at Sunrise, Aegis Living, and Monarch Place so far. Does anyone have any experiences with any of those, or recommendations for any other places in Oakland? I have been on a short timespan, and its hard to sort out all of the variables so fast. Lisa

My mother-in-law was at Aegis (the facility in Moraga) for several years before her death. It was a nice place, and the staff was very competent and caring. There were activiites for her when she was able to enjoy them. They helped arrange her transition to the dementia unit as her needs changed, and hospice when the time came. It was expensive, but was a good place for her when she no longer could take care of herself. Daughter-in-Law

Excellent Assisted Living for 85-y-o grandmother?

Feb 2010

I am interested in bringing my 85 year old grandmother from New Jersey to live close to me and my family. She is currently living independently and just can't manage anymore. Bringing her into our home might be too much to handle, and she does/will need medical care as well. Does anyone have recommendations for excellent assisted living facilities in the East Bay? She does have resources, so cost is not a big issue. Thanks so much. Sarah

Hi I don't know where you live but Diablo Senior Homes has two residential facilities. One in Danville the other in Clayton. Here is the website: Best of luck to you! Heather
Greenridge Senior Care is a lovely assisted living facility- clean, beautifully decorated and the people are very warm and treat the seniors like their own family. They are located in El Sobrante with easy access from I- 80. The rooms are large and the facility has a cozy atmostphere. There are plenty of activities to provide stimulation and therapy. There is also a skilled nursing facility next door where seniors can be moved in case they need additional care later. You can check out their website at or give them a call at 510- 681-4771. good luck in your search! Avril
Check out Rhoda Goldman Assisted Living in SF. My Mom was there and it's a wonderful place. Great staff, lots of wonderful activities, a beautiful facility, etc. I really can't speak highly enough about it. reva

Financial assistance for assisted living facility?

Nov 2009

My mother is way past ready for an assisted living situation. The problem is that all her money is tied to her home and to sell the home would take a lot of money getting it ready. Does anyone know if assisted living facilities have low income placements? I could help out paying for this for approx 6 months, but my concern is that the house won't sell in that time frame and I will have to pay beyond that. Someone told me that facilities have low income criteria for lower monthly payments but I haven't come accross this. Anyone?

We are just moving my mom to Assisted Living. We haven't found low-income subsidies for Assisted Living but there are Adult Day Care programs and similar programs to help people stay in their homes that are targeted to low income seniors who would otherwise need Assisted Living level of care. You would need to contact your county's Area Agency on Aging to find out what's available where she lives. For example Sacramento County has a home caregiver program for low income seniors. Senior independent living facilities may have some low income designated apartments but there is often a waiting list. For both independent and assisted living we have found that the non-profit facilities (often run by churches) are better. They may not have chandeliers and designer paint on the walls, but they have dedicated staff and the rates are lower. If your mom is a veteran or the spouse of a veteran, look into pensions and 'Aid and Attendance Benefit' through your local Veteran Services Organization to help with assisted living/caregiver costs. Good luck to you and your Mom. Kathy

Assisted Living for 65 Year Old Mother with MS

Oct 2009

My mother will be moving to the Berkeley area sometime next year (my father has aggressive pancreatic cancer and was given just a couple of months to live). She and my father have agreed that my mother would like to live in an assisted care facility in the Berkeley area.

I have perused the previous listings for assisted care but I wanted to find out which facility is best for young seniors. My mother is 65, can still get out for a short walk every day (using a cane), has a few cognitive issues (typical for MS-- memory issues), but is generally with-it, interested, social and bubbly. I think that being 20-30 years younger than everyone else in a home might depress her a bit. My sister and I would like her to live with us, but we have 5 small children between us, and the energy of young children just exhausts our mother's nervous system.

However, she does need someone to at least be within hearing range (in case she falls) 24 hours per day.

Do you have any recommendations for us? Thank you. Worried Daughter

I cared for my Alzheimer'd Mom in my home for 5 years, until her death @ 91. Before she died, I looked at (and liked) the Salem Home in Oakland: and also the AgeSong @ Lake Merrit (N.B. they have a sep. facility for dementia residents, not to confuse the two) Good luck --''been there, done that'' (well,almost had to)
Try Greenridge Senior Care in El Sobrante. It is in a very convenient location, has a lovely view, and the care givers are wonderful. It is also very reasonably priced. They have an assisted living facility as well as a skilled nursing facility on another wing which is nice in case your mother needs any more specialized care. The place is cheerful and lively and there are activities for the seniors everyday that they can choose to attend. They also go to the Center for Elder Independence and other outside trips. The phone no is 510-681- 4771 or you can also check out their website at Avril

Options for my 92 year old grandmother

April 2009

My family is in the process of choosing an assisted living facility in the east bay, for my 92 year old grandmother. Right now we are focused on Mercy (Oak), Salem (Oak), or Elders Inn (Alameda), and possibly the Birkshire (Berk). The smaller size of Elders Inn (or the Birkshire) seems like a potentially better fit for her, but I'm wondering if the quality of care is as high. I would love to hear from anyone with direct experience with these particular places or opinions about other assisted living places in this area. Lysa

I had a very positive experience with my father-in-law at Salem Lutheran. He lived there for several years 4 years ago, before moving to Portland to be near family, and we always were in awe about the kind of care for the price. The facilities were well cared for, it offers many care levels, and the staff we worked with were very good to him. It was a gem for our family. Julie

Short-term assisted living for recuperation

March 2006

Hi- My father-in-law (living in Rossmoor, currently) is getting more fragile and would like to live in an assisted living residence close to us (5 mile radius from Albany/Berkeley). Does anyone have any recommendations for a decent place that is not horribly expensive and in the area? Additionally, does anyone know of a short term assisted living residence (month- long is okay) while he recuperates from a bad fall? Thank you for your replies. Eugenie

You say your father has asked for an assited living facility because he's getting frail. If you are interested in alternatives, there are ways he can live independently with some precautions for his state. I've heard about a system that basically uses motion sensors and a computer to track the status of seniors in their homes-- checks things like if they've taken their medication, daily activities, etc. and reports to you if there are any changes you need to know about that could indicate a fall, illness, if it's too cold or hot in the home, etc. If this sounds like it could be an appealing and workable option for you, check out QuietCare online. If not, I'm sorry I couldn't be more helpful! Jessica
Many assisted living evnironments have rooms for temporary stays while someone is recovering from an injury. You could check with Claremont House or Piedmont Gardens in Oakland. Generally the larger facilities will be the ones to offer this option. Assisted living situations are not inexpensive, but, after all, you are paying for 24 hour care. The pricing will really depend on the amount of assistance someone requires. Please contact me if you need help selecting one: there's lots of assistance through CANHR ( they have ratings on assisted living facilities and also information on how to select one. Joanna Smith, LCSW, MPH, Healthcare Liaison. ( joanna
We have just been through the temporary recuperation from a fall part of your question with our frail elderly. The over 60 clinic on Ashby X Sacramento is helpfull. A nurse took us aside and quietly recommended that we drive the extra time over to the Rounseville. (40th X Broadway) It was an inconvenient commute from Berkeley for us twice a day was all we could manage with kids etc. They were very nice and she liked the taste of the food. They pureed everything to avoid choking problems....she missed the texture of course and was anxious to get home and have a martini, but they were very good there and trained us in fragile skin care etc..... I think all of these places are depressing and scarey. Maybe there is a better place but that is what someone in the know recommended to us. It is very clean and the staff is sweet.
El Cerrito Royale in El Cerrito is a very good center with several levels of assisted living. The rates vary and there are some HUD spaces at the facility, although you will have to check on current availability. My mother was there for five plus years and received wonderful help and care, including dining, medication ordering, storage and monitoring and delivery, entertainment, dining, cleaning, laundry, transportation to doctors clinic and errands, etc. A very nice staff and facility which has recently been redecorated. This is technically a board and care facility, which may affect your choice, as it is not literally a nursing home or classified as a SNF (Skilled Nursing Facility). The prescription givers are med techs. The location is less than 3 miles from Berkeley, and an easy commute. Recently Lost Mom

Independent grandmother needs someone on 24-hour call

July 2003

I have looked at the archives on assisted living, but was hoping that there might be someone out there that currently has a parent or grandparent that lives in an assisted living facility in the East Bay. I would like to find a nice place for my grandmother whom is independent but needs to have someone on 24 hour call. I am interested in any advice or opinions on the following homes: Montego Heights Lodge in Walnut Creek, Merrill Gardens in San Ramon, Moraga Royale, The Bershire in Berkeley, or any other nice facility that I might have over looked. The criteran would be: within 30 miles driving distance of Alameda, Friendly competant staff, clean, home-like atmosphere, a large independent room w/ private bath, great diabetic meals, and where more care is available if needs change in the future. There are so many to choose from... Help! Any advice would be grealy appreciated. Thank You, Melissa

we recently put my grandmother in a board and care home in El Sobrante that my family just loves. They have many of these types of places everywhere. If you want specifics, feel free to e-mail me and I can get the referral information to you. My mom got a list from Kaiser with all the local places around her house. Great food, 24 hour care, and 3 elderly woman in the home with my grandmother being the youngest at 93. they are usually run by phillipino nurses, since they can't work in a hospital with license from another country , but they are fully qualifed. Kerri
We were very happy with Summerville at Creekside in San Pablo. My mother lived there for three years until she needed to move to a nursing home. Amount of care is limited, but the community atmosphere is excellent, with many people still essentially caring for themselves. Size is big enough for social variety. There are many activities and regular concerts at the home. Outings on the house bus are available regularly. Food is decent. Phone number is 510-236-1444. Wendy
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