Medical costs are on the rise across the country, despite efforts built into the new healthcare laws. For the elderly, it can be challenging to find the right Medicaid supplemental programs that can help keep them healthy and safe. Every dollar spent on home care, assisted living and nursing home care comes from one of the following four sources:
- Government programs, such as Medicaid, Veterans’ Benefits and Social Security
- Insurance coverage, including Life, Long Term Care, Medicare and other Health Insurance
- Private assistance typically from Non-Profits, Foundations and Pharmaceutical Companies
- Personal property – The family’s resources, loans and even home equity loans on houses
The good news is there are hundreds of programs within those categories that you or your loved one may not be aware of. This week, we take a look at a few of the Medicaid programs that could benefit the elderly.
Medicaid Supplemental Programs for Assisted Living
Medicaid has a Benefit for Assisted Living Program. Currently, 45 states have assistance programs for Medicaid recipients. It might have assisted living, adult day care or other eldercare facilities. The challenge with this program is that there are limited Medicaid dollars that states can use, which often means there’s a waiting list. Still, it could be an ideal solution that could help pay for personal care services, nursing services and even supplemental income assistance to help with room and board. Mom might need someone to prepare meals for her; most states will cover the costs of hiring someone ensure her dinner is cooked and served each day.
Keep in mind, Medicaid’s reimbursement rates vary from state to state and the program may not be able to cover the entire expense. Some assisted living facilities don’t accept Medicaid. Due diligence is key.
Cash & Counseling Program
These are both financial and care assistance programs that are typically (but not always) derived from Medicaid. It provides the beneficiary with cash assistance.
Initially, the Cash & Counseling Program began as a pilot Medicaid program in just 15 states. The goal was to increase participants’ control over their care services and providers. Medicaid contracts with home care agencies to provide personal assistance services such as help with bathing, dressing, grooming and cooking. As the program evolved, recipients were afforded the option of choosing the agency and ultimately, the caregiver. In fact, family members could act as a “home care agency”.
Suddenly, family members were able to be on site with an older loved one without seeing their own household suffer because of lost time at work. It’s ideal for those who know just how crucial it may be for someone to be with Mom around the clock, but feel as though there are no good options. This program serves its purpose.
There are many other Medicaid programs available. Each state is different, of course, but you’d be surprised at what you find. If you need help with qualifying for Medicaid for yourself or a loved one, contact our offices today. We can help you through the Medicaid approval process while avoiding the unexpected.