As a retirement destination, Alaska offers a variety of scenery and open space unrivaled in the United States. Its reputation as “The Last Frontier” is accurate in many ways: Alaska has 17 national parks, including the country’s four largest. The snow-covered peaks of Denali National Park and Preserve are an awesome example of the vast, untamed wilderness that spreads across the state’s interior region. Many visitors to Juneau are surprised to feel the mild climate of the temperate rainforests in the state’s southeastern panhandle. And while Anchorage is farther north and surrounded by rougher terrain and colder conditions, its coastal location brings much cooler temperatures and less snowfall than the state’s Arctic regions in the far north. Alaska’s spectacular views and remote locales come at a price, though, as the most sparsely populated state in the country has fewer senior living options and therefore higher costs.
There are more than 10 nursing homes in Alaska. A Place for Mom’s Senior Living Advisors can provide you with a list of nursing homes in Alaska to help you find the community that fits your needs and budget.
The median monthly cost of a private room in a nursing home in Alaska is about $30,200, according to Genworth.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is a federal agency that regulates and provides ratings for nursing homes and skilled nursing facilities. CMS offers guidance to state Medicaid services regarding rules for facilities that are Medicaid-certified. Medicare provides a national nursing home website to view the audit and licensing history of Medicare-approved nursing homes.
Each state regulates senior living communities differently, but you can use APFM’s guide to assisted living regulations to learn more about access to facility records in Alaska.
In Alaska, nursing homes — also called convalescent homes or skilled nursing facilities — are intended for seniors who require 24-hour monitoring and medical assistance. These communities are designed to promote independence among seniors who require constant nursing care to perform activities of daily living (ADLs), but do not require hospital-level care.
Overall, the cost of living in Alaska is considered to be higher than the national average. All index scores are based on a scale with the national average set at 100.
About 13% of Alaska’s population are seniors. In the 2016 presidential election, Alaska leaned conservative.
By far the northernmost U.S. state, Alaska overall has a much cooler climate than the rest of the country, and its large size and geographic variation mean the state has many different climate classifications. In the southeastern panhandle, where the capital city Juneau is located, the temperate rainforests along the Pacific coast have an oceanic climate with mild temperatures throughout the year, accompanied by lots of rainfall. The higher elevations in the inland part of the panhandle — like much of Alaska’s interior and northern regions — have subarctic and tundra climates, with short, cool summers and winters with extreme cold and much snowfall. The Aleutian Islands in the southwest portion of the state have an oceanic climate similar to the panhandle. In Alaska’s southern coastal region, Anchorage has relatively mild temperatures with a warm-summer Mediterranean continental climate, although it’s surrounded by higher elevations with colder temperatures and more snow. There are pockets of cold semi-arid climates in the interior and northern regions of the state, and some areas in the far north have an Arctic — or ice-cap — climate with long and extremely cold winters.