Long-term care costs are a source of concern within the elder law community. According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services, 70% of people reaching the age of 65 will need long-term care eventually. You cannot count on Medicare to help, because Medicare does not pay for custodial care, even if it is in-home care.
The Medicaid Program
Medicaid is a government health insurance program that will pay for long-term care. It pays for most of the long-term care that is received by elders in the United States.
To qualify for Medicaid, you must meet eligibility requirements with regard to income and assets. The asset limit for an individual in most states is just $2,000. However, people often qualify for Medicaid by “spending down” their assets. To engage in a spend down, you give away or spend your assets before you apply for Medicaid.
If you can obtain eligibility, Medicaid will pay for nursing home care, and it could also pay for full-time residence in an assisted living community. However, many people would prefer to stay at home.
Elders often experience loneliness after they lose loved ones over the years. Your home may provide a sense of familiarity and comfort on a number of different levels. Staying at home could help you keep in touch with the things that have always mattered to you. Many people have relationships with their neighbors, and this is a factor as well.
It is possible for some people to receive help with their day-to-day needs at home. In-home caregivers can be somewhat expensive, but they are more economical than long-term care facilities.
Medicaid will pay for in-home care if you feel as though this a better option for you, but it is not done in a direct fashion. Medicaid funds a program called the Home and Community-Based Services Waiver program, and this program pays for in-home care.
This program is in place based on the understanding that many people who need assistance with their day-to-day needs can receive this assistance at home. Their lives are not disrupted through relocation, and Medicaid is ultimately going to save money, because in-home care is less expensive than institutionalization.
It is called a waiver program because the income and asset qualifications are eased to allow more people to qualify for the program.
Medicaid Planning Report
In this post we have provided some basic information about Medicaid and in-home care. If you would like to learn more about Medicaid planning, we invite you to download our free special report on the subject.
The report is very informative, and you can obtain your copy through this website. To access the report, click this link and follow the simple instructions: Free Medicaid Planning Special Report.
Parman & Easterday