According to US News and World Report, approximately 70% of all people aged 65 and older will require long-term care at some point in their lives. Long Term Care includes, nursing homes, hospice care, rehabilitation care and Assisted Living Centers. Unfortunately, costs for such care averages over $2,000 per month and significantly higher for Alzheimer’s care.
However, “Medicare doesn’t pay for long-term care.”
So, if Medicare doesn’t pay for long-term care, and it costs thousands of dollars per month, how do you pay for it?
There is no “magic” solution that will work perfectly for every person who needs help paying for long-term care. However, with careful planning, some of the following resources can provide much-needed financial relief for someone who needs long-term care services.
Liquidating savings is usually the easiest way to pay for long-term care. However, most families simply do not have enough savings available to pay for their own families, and their parents care as well.
If you have a long-term care policy, make sure you know what its exclusions and limitations are. Medicaid and Veteran’s assistance can be obtained with careful planning and guidance, while possibly allowing you to preserve, hard-earned assets for future generations.
Medicare will not pay for assisted living services, however they will pay for Home Health and Hospice services that are supplemental to services already offered in assisted living.
This program is a form of health insurance offered by the United States Government to people 65 years of age or older, younger people with specific disabilities, and people with End-Stage Renal Disease, permanent Kidney Failure requiring dialysis or a transplant. This program does help pay for Home Health and Hospice services, should a resident require services, but nothing relating directly to assisted living service or room and board.
For example, you can have a physical therapist, occupational therapist or speech therapist to come and help you on regular basis. You can also have additional nurse or doctor visits based on your condition, all covered by Medicare.
New Choices Waiver Program Changes
At the end of December 2014, the New Choices Waiver program reached the enrollment cap that was approved by the federal government. Because of this the program will not be accepting applications until July 1, 2015 when the program will once again have space available. The program will be increasing its capacity limit from 1700 to 2000 at that time.
Please be advised that beginning July 1, 2015, there will be some changes to the admission policy:
- The majority of available waiver slots will be reserved for long term residents of nursing facilities and other Utah licensed medical institutions (excluding institutions for mental disease). Admission policies for this population will not be changing and applications will be accepted throughout the year.
- For individuals applying from other qualifying settings such as licensed assisted living facilities or licensed small health care facilities, applications will only be permitted during three open application periods each year. The actual number of individuals admitted during each application period will be limited. Applicants who have lived in a qualifying facility type the longest will be given preference.
- Applicants are required to have resided in a skilled nursing facility for 90 days or more, with at least 30 days covered by Long-Term Care Medicaid. Alternatively, a minimum of 12 months of private-pay residency in an assisted living meets this requirement. Enrollment months at in July, November and February.
The open application schedule for fiscal year 2016 will be as follows:
- July 1 - July 14, 2015
- November 1 – November 14, 2015
- March 1 – March 14, 2016
Applications must be date stamped with a date that falls within the application period dates in order to be considered. (Fax date stamp, USPS post mark, or secure email received date stamp.)
- For people applying to the New Choices Waiver program from licensed assisted living facilities and small health care facilities, there will be an increase to the length of stay requirement from 180 days in previous policy to 365 days in the new policy. To meet this criterion, applicants must have satisfied the full 365 days on or before the last day of the open application period in which they apply.
It is important to call to your attention that while this report provides basic information on a number of programs, it is not a comprehensive list of all the resources you will find to be available to you. It also should not be used as a substitute for professional financial planning. The rules governing many of these resources can be complex and confusing. Some of these programs require advanced financial planning to take full advantage of the benefits provided. We encourage you to meet with a financial planner who can help guide you through the process.
The New Choices Waiver program is in the process of updating its application materials. Old applications will not be valid when the program begins accepting new applications, so please contact the program office in mid-June to request an updated application. (800) 662-9651, option 6.
Utah Senior Planning
To give you the expert guidance and assurance of the positive outcome when it comes to applying for financial aid programs as well as preservation of your family’s assets, we recommend that you talk with Utah Senior Planning.
Services provided include:
- Medicare Insurance
New Choices Waiver
Medicaid Eligibility Planning
Final Expense Planning
Tax Strategies and Preparation
Utah Senior Planning incorporates an innovative approach to helping seniors prepare for long-term healthcare needs and resolve medical crisis situations. "We’ve helped hundreds of families with Medicaid and Veterans Aid applications. It’s what we specialize in. Let our experienced experts guarantee your approval for benefits.Free family consultations to answer all of your questions."
For any further questions, please visit Utah Senior Planning.
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