For many seniors and their families, the daunting question of in-home elder care costs can deter them from seeking the help they need. However, there are many options available to help seniors and their family pay for in-home elder care services. We answer the following questions that potential in-home elder care clients and families commonly have below:
There are two main types of in-home elder care: skilled home health care and private duty services.
Skilled home health care provides in-home medical and rehabilitative care for elderly clients. Most often, skilled home health care clients have just returned from the hospital following an illness or surgery. These clients typically receive wound care, therapy, or help managing a chronic illness such as cancer or heart disease. Skilled home health care is provided by registered nurses and physical, occupational, or speech therapists when necessary.
Private duty home care places aides in the homes of seniors to help with everyday tasks. These tasks can include light housekeeping, dressing, bathing, medication management, and errands. Some seniors only require assistance a couple hours a week, while others receive help 24/7.
In-home elder care helps ensure that seniors are safe in their home, allowing them to age in place, and defers nursing home placement.
The cost of in-home care depends how many hours and the level of care needed. Because of this, the answer to the question of how much in-home elder care costs is different for everyone. For detailed information, you should reach out to the in-home elder care companies that you are interested in. They
can help evaluate your specific needs and give you a clear picture of what the cost of care would be.
There are five different ways to pay for in-home elder care: Medicare, Medicaid, private health insurance, long-term care insurance, and private pay. These methods are based on what type of home care and level of services are needed.
Does Medicare pay for home health care?
For seniors requiring home health care after an illness or surgery, Medicare will cover the cost of services for in-home medical care and rehabilitation for four to six weeks. Unfortunately, private duty is not covered under Medicare.
In Pennsylvania, under the Medicaid Community Health Choices Waiver, all types of home care are covered. The waiver is intended to help prevent placement in a long-term care facility. This coverage varies from state to state. A senior care manager can help you determine eligibility.
Private Health Insurance
Private health insurance usually pays for at least some percentage of the cost of skilled home health care, but generally not for private duty. However, it’s worth it to review your policy to determine your individual coverage.
Long-Term Care Insurance
Long-term care insurance usually covers skilled home health care and may provide some private duty home care coverage. However, polices are usually purchased well before the policy holder has a need as older seniors and those with chronic illnesses are typically denied coverage. It is best to start considering purchasing a long-term care insurance policy while in your 50’s or 60’s.
The most straightforward way of paying for in-home care is paying out of pocket. However, this often requires a large savings that many seniors and their families might not have.
If private pay is not feasible, the options above including Medicaid and Medicare may help you pay for your home health care.
There are many options to consider when trying to determine how best to pay for in-home senior care. As mentioned previously, ff you’re still wondering how much in-home elder care costs for you and how to pay for it, you should reach out to the specific companies to get their exact costs. Another option is to contact a senior care advisor, lawyer, or financial advisor specializing in elder care, to guide you in the right direction.
We offer such advice for no cost to the members of our community. Our expert care managers can help evaluate your financial situation and locate the right in-home elder care services for you. Someone is available to talk for free, 24/7 at 215.371.3400.