When seeking out long-term care at a senior living community, the cost involved is often one of the biggest challenges people face. Whether you’re looking for care for yourself or a loved one, you will need to find a way to pay for it, which is sometimes a problem for seniors living on a fixed income. The average cost of assisted living in the USA is around $4,000 per month and can be higher depending upon where you’re located and the level of care you need.
Fortunately, financial assistance for seniors does exist if you know where to look. Being able to afford good quality care shouldn’t have to be difficult for older people, regardless of their background or their income.
Below, we’ll discuss a few forms of financial assistance that may help you find the care you’re looking for.
Elderlife Financial Solutions
Elderlife Financial Solutions, or EFS for short, can help ease a lot of the financial burden of moving into a senior living community. The company offers several services that can help you get the money you need quickly. For example, their Bridge Loan can often get you funds within a 24-hour period.
In many cases, you’ll need a large amount of money quickly before you can begin the process of moving yourself or a loved one into a top-quality assisted living community. For some seniors, this means liquidating assets, such as by selling their home. Of course, selling a home can be a process that takes a long time. It can sometimes be months from starting the process until actually getting the money you need.
The purpose of Elderlife’s Bridge Loan is to get money into your hands as fast as possible so that you can sell your home or otherwise liquidate your assets at your own pace. You’ll then be able to pay the loan back at a low interest rate once you are able.
If you’re eligible for Medicare, it can be used to pay for assisted living for seniors. Medicare functions as a type of health insurance that you must be 65 years of age or older to apply for. It’s possible to apply when you’re younger than 65 if you meet certain disability guidelines. To apply, you can head to the Social Security website and visit the Medicare page. You can also call the Social Security Administration at 1-800-722-1213.
If you need assistance with your application, you can contact the Arizona State Health Insurance Assistance Program—SHIP for short—at 800-432-4040. You can also get help from the senior living community you’re interested in moving into. At Solterra Senior Living, each community has a Community Benefits Advocate who can help residents and future residents complete applications and explore other financial options.
Many wonderful assisted living communities also accept Medicaid, which is a state and federal health insurance program for those with lower incomes. Like Medicare, Medicaid is designated for seniors 65 and older or those with a disability. Recipients must meet the income requirements as well.
If you have a low income, it shouldn’t bar you from receiving the very best of care. Some of the best assisted living communities accept Medicaid and will be more than happy to help you get the ball rolling with your application. Simply head to the Medicaid website and send them a message asking for further information.
Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System
The Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System, or AHCCCS, is Arizona’s Medicaid agency, which will offer help at a state level. They are there to help make medical costs more bearable for families living in Arizona, and they cover a lot more than just assisted living for seniors. They’ll help to pay for emergency care, immunizations, surgery services, pregnancy care, dialysis, and even dental treatment for children under 21 years of age.
For individuals eligible for Arizona Long-Term Care, AHCCCS can help with many different services relating to your care. Dental services can be covered, as well as nursing facilities, home health services, home-delivered meals, and attendant care, just to name a few. Applying is a simple process, requiring a simple online application or a phone call to the office in your area. In Central Arizona, the number is 800-564-5465. In Northern Arizona, it’s 800-322-8670. In Southern Arizona, the number is 866-495-6738.
Medical Expense Deduction
In some cases, your income will be considered too high to qualify for low-income insurance such as Medicaid, but will still be too low to pay for most expenses out-of-pocket. In these cases, you can apply for Arizona’s Medical Expense Deduction—or MED—through AHCCCS. Call one of the phone numbers mentioned in the above paragraph for more information about this financial assistance program.
Long-Term Care Insurance
Long-term care insurance can be another great form of financial assistance for seniors living in Arizona. There are several types of policies you can purchase, depending upon your specific means, as well as needs.
Traditional long-term care insurance is paid as an annual premium. It’s best to purchase this type of insurance when you’re younger. Starting in your fifties is best because the premiums will be lower. If you wait longer, you’re more likely to have a health condition that could drive the cost up. If it does happen that you develop a condition that requires assisted living, the long-term care insurance will pay for your care.
Hybrid long-term care insurance is another option. The benefit of this is that it functions as a traditional life insurance policy, but with a long-term care rider that will be paid out if it turns out you require long-term care. The premium can be paid as a single lump sum or in the form of multiple payments over time.