17- Jul2016
Posted By: Tony Fischer

Dementia Memory Care Can Save On Long Term Care Costs

Alzheimer’s Dementia is one of the biggest healthcare concerns facing our seniors today. Consequently, families are faced with the choice of taking care of a senior at home or placing them into a nursing home. Facing the challenge of this progressive disease at home is difficult but achievable with the senior care options available in today’s healthcare market. Memory care is an example of one such service.

Also Read: How To Pay For Long Term Care Costs

Memory Care is a Special Care Unit

This is a great solution for the senior who needs more care than can be provided at home.  Also known as a Special Care Unit or SCU, memory care features staff with special training in dealing with people with Alzheimer’s and Dementia.

Memory Care Units are constructed with the Dementia disease process in mind. Units have enclosed walking paths and disguised exits to keep those with wandering behaviors from getting lost. Pictures instead of words are often used to labels doors leading to key areas like the bathroom. Meal and recreation programs are designed to accommodate for the Alzheimer’s Dementia symptoms.

Memory Care Units are Cost Effective

Although seniors suffering from Dementia do require a lot of care, they do not require 24-hour monitoring by a registered nurse. In a Memory Care unit, a nursing director supervises nursing assistants who provide care to the residents. That allows this setting to provide care at a reduced cost offering a great solution to those residents who need a level of care that doesn’t rise to the level of nursing home.

Memory Care is just one of multiple levels of the senior care continuum. Online resources like Nursing Home Compare and Home Care Compare can provide a general list of providers in your area. However determining which level an elder needs can be confusing because of all of the options available. There are professionals that can help those in need navigate the many senior care options.

Need Help Managing Your Care? Hire Senior Care Sherpa On A Low Cost, Monthly Subscription Basis to Represent You and Your Family

If you think your family could use some help figuring out dementia care, please fill out the form below.  Our Senior Care Sherpas serve as guides through the complex terrain of the healthcare system.  They are specially trained in helping seniors evaluate current care needs and develop a plan. Senior Care Sherpas direct families toward reputable and trusted services. That includes finding facilities that can meet the unique care needs of the Alzheimer’s and Dementia patient.

10- Jul2016
Posted By: Tony Fischer

How To Pay For Long Term Care Cost

The life expectancy for the average American is on the rise.  Thanks to advances in medicine and pharmaceuticals American’s can expect to live to the ripe old age of 79 in 2016. By 2050 that average age is projected to increase to 83! With the rise in average age comes more demand for healthcare services. Consequently, seniors must now plan for long term care cost.

Long term care is expensive to be sure, but the cost can be controlled.  Some money will have to come out of pocket. However, if planned the right way, long term care cost can be contained and resources preserved.

This post aims to shed light on long term care cost and give you some strategies for paying for it.

Long Term Care Is Inevitable

It is no longer a possibility that a senior will need long term care but an inevitability. According to the CDC, 1.4 million Americans over the age of 65 are currently using nursing home services.  Another 4.9 million have utilized home care services and yet another 1.3 million are under the care of hospice. If you are a senior there chance is pretty good that you and your family will utilize the long-term care health care system. Yet most don’t plan for it.

The biggest concern most seniors should have when planning for retirement is paying for long term care.  Costs can run anywhere from $500 to $14,000 a month depending on the type of care you need.  That can shrink even the largest of nest eggs.

So how do seniors go about paying for long term care? Private-Pay or out-of-pocket is the obvious answer, but there are some other resources that can help supplement the enormous cost of aging.


The default medical insurance for seniors 65 and older covers hospital and acute care services but falls short when asked to cover long-term care at home or in a facility.

To Learn More About Medicare, visit Medicare.gov

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Employer Based Insurance – Great for covering office visits and hospital stays. But also falls flat when reducing the cost of long-term care.

Learn More about Medigap Insurance plans from Medicare.gov

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The default payor for long-term nursing home care has a big catch. You have to be indigent to use it. To complicate matters the five-year look back period makes planning difficult. The potential spend down of assets and the fear of losing their home keeps seniors and their families up at night.

Medicaid rules vary from State to State. Check with your State for eligibility rules. The posts listed below give some helpful tips about medicaid planning and how what medicaid covers.

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Long-Term Care Insurance

The insurance industry’s answer to the rise cost for senior care.  The problem is that most people can’t afford it and only covers a fraction of the overall cost.

Veterans Aid and Attendance Benefit

An excellent benefit for those who have sacrificed for our countries freedom but asset limits and a notoriously inefficient application process make it difficult to access. However if qualified and properly submit the application, Veterans can get over $2,000 a month toward the cost of long term care.  Currently there is no look-back period for the Aide and Attendance benefit, but there are rumors congress will put one in place to prevent aggressive asset protection.

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County and State Programs

Municipalities have made an effort in recent years to combat the problem by offering special programs for seniors in need.  Meals on Wheels, home chore and respite care providers offer support for seniors planning to age in place in the comfort of their own home. However asset and income limits do apply.