How to Pay For a Nursing Home
Preventing elder abuse and neglect requires family members to choose the best nursing home or assisted living facility for their loved ones. Many factors need to be considered, and family members need to do their research to ensure the facility has a good record with patients, a good reputation, and a cost within the family’s means. Here are several ways to pay for nursing home care that can expand a family’s options when choosing a facility.
You can’t judge a nursing home or ALF by the cost alone. However, facilities with the best reputations can charge more because their services are in demand. Similarly, the best workers in the industry will tend to be at nursing homes that pay them well. Knowing the different ways to pay for nursing home care allows families to consider the best options, even if they cost a little more.
Paying for nursing home care entirely out of pocket is beyond the means of most families. Nursing homes are less expensive in the south than in other parts of the country. But it still costs more than $90,000 a year to pay for nursing home care. This level of annual expense would stretch the finances of most families to the breaking point, which is why most people rely on other ways to pay for nursing home care.
It’s possible to purchase a long-term care insurance policy that covers the cost of nursing home care when someone gets older. The policies are harder to get in Florida due to higher daily cost than the national average, and some rules that have convinced some providers it’s not profitable to sell long-term care insurance to Floridians. However, the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA) has a program that can help residents get long-term care insurance that can lessen the blow once the family member needs to receive care at a nursing home.
Veterans of the U.S. military get a nursing home benefit that can cover some of the costs of nursing home care. The VA provides a benefit between $1,000 and $2,000 per month for nursing home care. This amount would drastically reduce the amount the family would need to pay out of pocket, though the amount isn’t enough to cover the total monthly cost of most facilities.
Though most health programs for seniors are run through Medicare, this isn’t the case for long-term care at a nursing home. Medicare only pays for a limited number of days while the person in recovering. To get government assistance for long-term nursing home care, the senior needs to qualify for Medicaid. The qualifications are means based, so the person can have a large number of assets of monthly income to be eligible for the program. Since people who qualify for these benefits have 100 percent of the cost covered, Medicaid is estimated to pay between 45 percent and 65 percent of all nursing home costs in America.
Other options exist, such as using a financial product like a reverse mortgage to gain the money needed for nursing home care. However, there are a lot of pros and cons to consider when using these tactics to pay for a nursing home.
Always remember that price alone doesn’t indicate the quality of a nursing home. The higher cost could mean more profits for a substandard facility. Families need to do a thorough investigation and walkthrough of the facilities they are thinking of choosing. Download the free Caregiver Guide from the Law Firm of Steve Watrel P.A. to get resources that can help families choose the best nursing home for their loved ones. And if you have any questions about the rights of patients in nursing homes, the Law Firm of Steve Watrel, P.A. can help.