In 1990 Canby, Oregon changed the face of Long Term Care in the United States
Today, there are approximately 547 Licensed Assisted Living Communities in Oregon. In June of 1990, there was only one: Rackleff House in Canby. Since that time, Assisted Living has gone from a little understood concept to the preferred model for elder care in the country. Benefiting from national news coverage, including the Wall Street Journal, CBS News Sunday Morning, and the NBC Nightly News, Rackleff House and Oregon became the face of this new and innovative way to care for elders.
Prior to Rackleff House, institution-based nursing homes dominated the landscape of long term care options and offered residents little privacy, very limited choices and almost no say in the care they received. In stark contrast, Rackleff House offered private apartments, private bathrooms and services that were directed not by regulations and staff, but by the resident themselves.
Establishing Rackleff House did not come easy. There was intense resistance by an entrenched long term care industry, as well as by some consumer groups and antiquated federal regulation. Oregon was the first state to receive a Medicaid Waiver from the federal government to allow the expenditure of federal dollars to fund home and community-based services as an alternative to nursing homes. The Medicaid waiver opened doors for countless low-income elders to receive high quality care in community-based care settings.
Rackleff House (now called Rackleff Place) is still in Canby and still providing high quality, personalized care and housing to both private pay and Medicaid-eligible residents.