The 64-year-old Kentucky Association of Health Care Facilities has launched the Kentucky Center for Assisted Living, the association announced Wednesday.

“We’re thrilled to announce the launch of this new organization, adding a significant new voice to advocate on behalf of Kentucky’s senior care community,” KAHCF President Betsy Johnson said in a statement. “Assisted living is a rapidly growing profession with unique opportunities and challenges.”

Kentucky has 200 assisted living communities, with a total of 12,500 beds, according to KAHCF.

KCAL, a state affiliate of the National Center for Assisted Living, also will help ensure that Kentucky senior living providers work toward the 2021 goals of NCAL’s Quality Initiative:

  • Reduce turnover among direct care staff to a rate of 50% or less.
  • Ensure that at least 90% of customers (residents and/or families) are satisfied with their experience.
  • Safely reduce hospital readmissions within 30 days of hospital discharges to a rate of 20% or less.
  • Safely reduce the off-label use of antipsychotics to a rate of 15% or less.

KAHCF also named KCAL’s three inaugural board members:

  • Chair Debra Finneran is senior vice president of health services of Masonic Communities Kentucky (which announced a name change from Masonic Homes on Tuesday). She is a registered nurse and a licensed long-term care administrator who has had a 40-year career in nursing administration roles, ownership and management of assisted living and nursing facilities.
  • Vice Chair Michael Bowlden is the executive director of The Oaks, an assisted living community, in La Grange, KY, and a licensed nursing home administrator at a neighboring skilled nursing facility, The Richwood. He has been involved in the long-term care profession for the past 12 years.
  • Secretary Joe Jurgensen has worked for Management Systems of Kentucky for more than 16 years, serving in various capacities, from facility administrator and executive director to his current position as director of operations. He is a chairperson of the association’s Personal Care Home Committee.

“We are fortunate to have three great leaders to help guide the new organization to success,” Johnson said.