August 16, 2013

Diane Walker, RN, MS, CSA

You’ve been helping out your aging mother for many years now, but lately, the responsibility has gotten to be more than you can handle. Your loved one’s health may have declined so that you worry about leaving her alone. You may have moved farther away, or you may have new obligations that leave you little time for caregiving. You don’t want to place her to a nursing home. The ideal situation would be to hire someone to help care for her in her home, but isn’t that expensive?

If the above scenario sounds familiar, you’re far from alone. As our loved ones age, they often reach a point at which their needs become too much for family members to handle alone. Many people would love to bring on in-home care, but don’t because they fear the cost. But there are many different payment options for in-home care, and one of them may work perfectly for you:

  • Veterans Benefits: For qualifying veterans and their spouses, the Veteran Affairs Aid and Attendance Pension program can be a great way to cover up to $1,704 per month of in-home care costs for a veteran or $1,094 per month to a spouse. Contact your local VA to see if your loved one is eligible.
  • Long-Term Care Insurance: If your loved one has a long-term care insurance policy, this is an ideal way of paying for in-home care. This type of insurance is intended to help cover the cost of long-term care that is not covered by health insurance.
  • Health Insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid: Depending on your loved one’s health situation, she may be eligible for her health care, Medicare or Medicaid to cover some of the costs of in-home care. Contact your insurance provider to find out what’s covered.
  • Private Pay: For some people, private pay may be the best option for covering the cost of in-home care.
  • Payment Assistance: Even if private pay is your only option, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the total cost has to come out of your pocket. Some older adults may want to consider asset conversion options such as a reverse mortgage, home equity line of credit, Rex agreement, death benefit loan, or life settlement. And a of variety state-funded programs can help lower your family’s tax burden.

For many people, in-home care is the best way to keep a loved one living happily and safely in the comfort of her own home as she grows old. And thanks to a variety of financial options, in-home care may be more affordable than you think.

Tags: pay, home care, options, senior care, elder care, home care