Overall, the rural population has been declining in recent years. However, those remaining, and those moving to rural areas are most commonly older, meaning that the need for services is growing, and will continue to grow as more and more baby boomers reach retirement age.
In recent years, states have taken a number of steps to shift eligible seniors from institutions to home and community-based care settings and to prevent premature placement for others. However, institutional care still accounts for the majority of state spending on long-term services and supports (LTSS)--55 percent in 2011. This brief provides a number of strategies states may want to consider that will help rural seniors age in place and live with dignity.
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