Assisted living continues to be the fastest-growing segment of membership for the American Health Care Association / National Center for Assisted Living, NCAL said Thursday in newly issued annual report for 2017.

The total number of assisted living beds represented by members increased 13,701 over the course of the year, NCAL said, going from 217,003 to 230,704.

Member companies were evenly split between multi-facility owners and independent owners as of Dec. 31. Sixty-one percent of members were in the for-profit arena. Forty-three states now have NCAL affiliates, with South Carolina being the most recent one to form in 2017, according to the one-page document.

Three big public policy matters for assisted living in 2017, the fact sheet highlighted, included the three-year delay, to 2022, for compliance with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ home- and community-based settings final rule; Congress’ (ultimately unsuccessful) efforts to cut Medicaid, which would have affected HCBS settings such as assisted living communities; and (ultimately unfruitful) tax-reform efforts that would have eliminated the use of tax-exempt private activity bonds to finance acquisitions, new construction and renovations by not-for-profit organizations and elimination of the medical expense deduction used by many senior living residents. A House of Representatives version of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act had eliminated the medical expense deduction as well as private activity bonds, but they were not part of the bill that passed.

In 2018, AHCA/NCAL continues to meet with the federal government to advocate for ways that its assisted living and skilled nursing members could realize tax savings from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

See the annual report here.