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Are There Medical Professionals Available in Assisted Living Communities?

Are There Medical Professionals Available in Assisted Living Communities?

At first glance, the average person might assume that an assisted living community and skilled nursing facility are the same. In reality, a skilled nursing facility or care home provides intensive, round-the-clock medical care for seniors with long-term illnesses or advanced medical needs. Assisted living communities, on the other hand, are more appropriate for healthy seniors who don’t require extensive medical care but could use some assistance with activities of daily living

However, several different types of medical professionals and staff are available in assisted living communities to support the needs of residents. Below, you’ll find information on the types of specific medical professionals commonly found in assisted living communities, like the Mission at Agua Fria Assisted Living in Peoria, AZ. You’ll also find a brief description of the types of support they provide and the comprehensive healthcare support assisted living provides its residents. 

Medical Professionals and Staff Commonly Found in Assisted Living Communities


Different types of nurses work in assisted living to administer medication, help manage medications, and develop and coordinate care plans for residents. 

  • Registered nurses (RNs) are trained to assess health needs, conduct exams of residents, and coordinate with doctors and other specialists involved in care. RNs create individual care plans for residents and supervise licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and Licensed Vocational Nurses (LVNs) who assist them in their duties. In some communities, RNs also facilitate wellness and exercise programs.
  • LPNs and LVNs work with RNs directly with patients, taking vital signs, administering medication, and providing other care.
  • Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) work with patients to provide personal care, especially with activities of daily living like bathing/showering, dressing/grooming, and transferring. Since they work daily with residents, they also assist RNs with monitoring and reporting changes in residents’ health.


Many assisted living communities have therapists on staff to work with residents in different capacities. 

  • Physical therapists work directly with residents to guide them in exercises that help strengthen the muscles needed for daily living and improve flexibility, mobility, and balance.
  • Occupational therapists in assisted living communities work with seniors to help them relearn skills essential to everyday living and hobbies. These skills help seniors maintain or gain new levels of independence. 
  • Speech therapists can often be helpful for residents who have difficulties communicating or swallowing.

Certified Care Specialists

Some assisted living staff receive additional training in memory care and dementia. Known as certified care specialists, dementia care specialists, or certified dementia practitioners, these professionals usually work in memory care and with residents with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia. Specialized communication methods and an understanding of dementia allow certified care specialists to provide the compassionate, individualized care and assistance that memory care residents need. 

Dementia care specialists work closely with residents, often accompanying them to cognitive therapy classes like art, music, and color therapy, social activities like sing-a-longs and game nights, and engaging in cognitive games and activities like puzzles. 


One of the benefits of assisted living communities is access to nutritious, delicious food. Many assisted living communities employ certified dieticians and nutritionists to develop menus of nutritionally dense food that enhance the health of residents. These professionals assess residents’ nutritional needs and also help educate seniors on making good food choices and living a healthy lifestyle.

Visiting Doctors

Although there are not usually doctors on staff in assisted living, residents often can bring in their preferred healthcare providers as visiting doctors when needed. 

Healthcare Support Services Commonly Available in Assisted Living Communities

In addition to the medical professionals on staff in most assisted living communities, the services provided to residents also ensure their health needs are addressed in a comprehensive way. The following are some of the support services commonly available in assisted living communities that residents can rely on to maintain optimal health and wellness.

  • Health assessment and individual care plans: When residents first move into assisted living, staff conduct an evaluation to determine their specific healthcare needs. Based on that evaluation, staff then create individualized care plans specific to each resident. Regular check-ups occur, recording vital signs and analyzing chronic conditions. Changes in health are closely monitored, and the care plans are adjusted as appropriate. This monitoring also helps with early detection and intervention when needed. 
  • Medication management: Residents never have to worry about knowing when to take their medicine or administer it to themselves. RNs, LPNs, and LVNs are trained to administer medications based on prescriptions and monitor drug interactions, side effects, or adverse reactions.
  • Emergency response systems: High-quality assisted living communities have emergency response systems available in every apartment and room. Residents can alert staff, who can respond immediately to medical situations.
  • Assistance with activities of daily living: Trained and caring staff, such as personal care aides, provide daily assistance with bathing, grooming, dressing, incontinence care, transferring, eating, mobility, and more, which means that residents can enjoy the independence they deserve.  
  • Dining services: All the balanced nutrition that residents need to maintain their physical health is available through the dining services at many assisted living communities. 
  • Transportation services: Some assisted living communities have chauffeured transportation available to take residents to medical and other healthcare and therapy appointments. These services mean that residents never have to worry about the lack of access to care they may need.
  • Exercise and wellness centers: Many assisted living communities have group exercise classes to increase the strength, mobility, and overall wellness of residents. Wellness centers have equipment for residents who want to work with physical or occupational therapists.  

Assisted Living in Peoria, AZ, That Provides All the Care You Need

If you’re looking for assisted living in Peoria, AZ, that truly empowers you to live well, look no further than the Mission at Agua Fria. Our services and amenities combine to create a truly comprehensive support system to meet the physical, mental, social, emotional, and spiritual needs of each and every resident. Have questions? Please feel free to contact us or schedule a visit to our campus; we are here to help!