When you or your loved one needs memory care, it can be quite stressful and overwhelming to decide what to do. You want to find the best care available for the individual needs, of course. However, many people may be afraid that they will be unable to afford memory care. And this fear over finances only adds more stress to an already difficult situation. Luckily, there are more options for this type of care out there than you may have realized. Read on below to find out more about financial options for memory care.
Insurance can potentially cover at least some of the costs of memory care. However, often, coverage for memory care will ultimately come from a combination of different options. Sometimes this includes personal funds, such as savings, Social Security, or retirement accounts.
Medicare and Medicaid
Some believe that Medicare will be enough to cover all the costs of memory care, but this is unfortunately not the case. Both Medicare and Medicaid have specific guidelines when it comes to what they will and will not cover. Medicare usually only provides coverage for a limited amount of time. Medicaid will usually provide coverage for a longer period, but eligibility may vary depending on what state you’re in.
Something else to note is that Medicare will not cover in-home memory care. While it will provide at least some coverage for an assisted living program, it may cover some parts but not others. For instance, it may not cover personal care services.
And, of course, not all people will qualify for Medicaid to begin with, because it depends on income level. You should also take time to double-check if the memory care centers you are considering take Medicaid or Medicare, as not all do.
Long-Term Care Insurance
Depending on the policy, this can pay some or all of the coverage for memory care. Because of the longer term of coverage, it does provide some stability, consistency, and peace of mind. If long-term care insurance isn’t quite right for you, there may be short-term care insurance available, which typically provides coverage for about a year.
State-Based Non-Medicaid Assistance Programs
Depending on the state where you live, financial assistance through the state’s general fund may be available for memory care. These assistance programs are typically designed for low-income individuals and households. However, some may not be limited to one level of financial income. Some may be specifically designed for memory care, while others may be more general but can still be used as a memory care financial option.
Keep in mind that this isn’t a guaranteed financial option for memory care. States can have limited funds available to use toward these programs. Typically, that means they’re only available to give to a limited number of people. In some cases, there may even be a waiting list for potential recipients.
For more information specific to where you live, you may need to contact your state’s Department of Aging or your local Area Agency on Aging.
This category of financial options for memory care can include both local nonprofits and larger national foundations. For instance, if memory care is needed for someone with Alzheimer’s, there are national organizations like the Alzheimer’s Association or Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. These organizations can provide services, such as reduced-rate respite care, rather than cash assistance.
Respite care is a more temporary type of memory care service, as opposed to moving into a memory care center full-time. It can be used to give at-home caregivers a break or for recovery after a medical procedure. This option can give you an idea of life in a memory care center or being part of a memory care program. This way, you can see if it’s right for you, as opposed to diving right in. You don’t want to break the bank before you know if it will be worth the cost.
There also may be respite care grants available through certain organizations. These can either reduce the costs or, in some cases, provide respite care free of charge. For instance, these grants can also come from the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America or the Alzheimer’s Association.
Veterans Assistance Programs
Some financial options for memory care may be available for veterans, so if that applies to you, look into the Veteran Association’s programs. For instance, the Veterans Aid and Attendance Benefit is a program that helps both veterans and their spouses. You can contact your local office to find out more specific information. And, again, keep in mind that these assistance programs are not guaranteed to cover all of the costs.
A reverse mortgage allows you to withdraw from the equity in your home. People take out reverse mortgages for numerous different financial reasons. If you can, it could be a financial option for memory care. Usually, you’ll be able to decide how the money is withdrawn. Some have a fixed monthly rate, while others are set up as a line of credit. Before making this decision, you should be fully aware of both the benefits and the risks involved with a reverse mortgage. Another option that some turn to is selling their homes, but this is obviously not the right choice for everyone.
Take the time to discuss your different options, especially with your loved ones, and make sure that you thoroughly look into what’s available. You can find a breakdown of the typical costs of care, as well as some of the different financial options, on the US Department of Health and Human Services’ Long-Term Care website.
Once you find the right financial option for memory care, it’s time to make sure you choose the right program. Consider our Peoria memory care program at the Mission of Agua Fria. You can find additional information about financial options for memory care and more on our website.
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