Traditionally, long-term care services have been used by a diverse marketplace. The chronically ill, developmentally disabled, mentally ill and aging population has looked to long-term care support services as a means of physical and emotional support. Much of the time these services were housed together for the sake of efficiency. The enormous burden these services are creating on the economy, and the growing aging population, have forced the recognition that long-term care service delivery systems must change. Alternate programming for long-term care services that reach out into the community and into individual homes is becoming an attractive approach to meeting the growing demands of the marketplace. Home health, specialized housing and creative funding mechanisms such as HMOs, are examples of initiatives undertaken by healthcare organizations that view diversification as a vehicle for survival. Market research techniques that have been used in other industries are being adapted to the healthcare industry to ensure the proper mix of services that are demanded by older, more knowledgeable consumers. The programs of the future will be market driven, with the ability of the individual to pay for such services playing a significant role. The healthcare provider of today is in a position to serve the community in new ways. By becoming an integral link in the long-term care system and by developing new programs, the organization can serve as a catalyst for change. It is up to the governing bodies and managers of these facilities to become visionaries and to accept responsibility for assessing the market for long-term care services and to guide their organization into the future.