The population of North Carolinians aged 65 to 84 is expected to increase by 97.9 percent by 2029, according to the North Carolina Division of Aging and Adult Services. Now could be a good time to invest in an adult day care to prepare for North Carolina's growing senior population. Starting your facility correctly and with good intentions is the first step in making sure that happens.

Step 1.

Review the North Carolina State Standards for Certification from the North Carolina Division of Aging and Adult Services. Certification is achieved by meeting these standards with regard to management, staffing, building, fire safety, sanitation, nutrition and program activities for your proposed adult day care. Use this information to guide the creation of your business plan, policies and procedures. Also set up your business structure, including choosing for-profit or non-profit status.

Step 2.

Select a location. It can be a home which is a single family dwelling that will hold up to 16 people, or a center which is any facility that is not a single family dwelling. It must be approved by a local environmental health specialist, local fire safety inspector, county department of social services and the North Carolina Division of Aging and Adult Services. It must also comply with the North Carolina Building Code and local zoning laws.

Step 3.

Complete the application for certification through the county department of social services where you have decided to locate your adult daycare. Included with your application will be program policies, organizational diagram, job description, daily rate sheet, facility floor plan, fire inspection report, building inspection form, sanitation evaluation report, governing documents and contact information for your company and its board or owners. You must also include a medical statement certifying the health of staff, proof of CPR and First Aid training by a physician. Additionally, you must include a criminal background check onyourself and each staff member and an adult day care certification report.

You will be assigned a social worker who will review your application and may visit your site for further review. You will receive a decision from the North Carolina Division of Aging and Adult Services 14 business days after they receive your application and conduct your visit.

Step 4.

Secure the resources necessary for opening. This will include additional financing, food, supplies, an administrator and registered dietitian or certified nutritionist. Market your business and promote your grand opening to the community.


Contact Glenda Artis with the department via email at at for further clarification about starting an adult daycare. An adult daycare can be located in a multi-use facility as long as the space used for the daycare is exclusive to that use. No state funds are available for grants for the start up of adult day cares.