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Affording the nursing home: Some possible options

If there is one thing that is certain, it's that medical care is expensive in the United States. Nursing homes are no exception to that rule.

For most senior citizens, the major obstacle they face is finding a good residence in old age. Assisted living and nursing homes vary in price depending on a number of factors, but the average that people pay is between $2,000 and $5,000 each month.

With rates so high, it's easy to see why many seniors can't pay this amount directly. However, there are ways to afford this care, especially if you begin to plan for the need for long-term care earlier in life.

How can you afford nursing home care?

There are several ways to afford this necessary care. Some options you can look into include:

  • Financial assistance
  • Insurance payments
  • Veterans' benefits
  • Long-term care insurance
  • Life-insurance benefit payments

Many people choose to pay for nursing home care with Medicaid. Medicaid is used when you have little money left or available to you.

Can a nursing home resident be evicted if they can't pay rent?

Yes, in some cases, a nursing home may evict a resident if they're not able to afford care. When searching for the right nursing home for yourself or a loved one, ask to see the company's policy in writing. The requirements to evict a resident may vary, so reviewing this contract with your elder law attorney is a good idea, especially if money may be a problem in the future.

For those with no other options and no financial support, Georgia's Department of Health may allow you to file a hardship waiver on your family member's behalf. This won't apply to assisted-living facilities, but being able to qualify could help your attorney or ombudsman negotiate a position for your loved one in a facility based on your financial situation.

Being able to afford nursing home care is something that you should try to plan for early in life and be prepared for if you have to place a loved one in a nursing home. If you speak with an attorney in Atlanta, you may be able to work through applications for local benefits or Medicaid, so that you can help your loved one stay in a medical facility. For many elders, receiving nursing home care is the only option. Your attorney will help you look into ways to afford their continued care.

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