Can my mother apply for Medicaid, while continuing to live in an assisted living facility?

Asked by
Answers 1 to 9 of 9
There's no Medicaid rule that requires a state Medicaid program to pay for assisted living. Most states don't cover it. But a few states have realized that assisted living usually costs much less than a nursing home. So, the state Medicaid program saves money if some people live in assisted living instead of nursing homes. If your mother is eligible for Medicaid and she lives in a state where Medicaid covers assisted living, she might get coverage for the place where she's now living. First, she has to apply for Medicaid coverage through her local county human services or social services office. She'll have to show her financial records, proving that she has a small income and few assets. If she qualifies for Medicaid and her state covers assisted living, the next step is to see if the place where she's living is certified to receive Medicaid payments.
Call your state Social Services and speak with a case worker. I know that your mom's total income will justify her getting Medicaid or Medical Assistance. The case worker will have to total mom's income from her pension or 401 K, Medicare, Stock dividends, etc.
All the best to you and mom!

Eddie B.
Top Answer
Here's a look at the different kind of limits that special state Medicaid programs impose on assisted living coverage. The specific rules are different for each state.
• Some programs only cover people who would require nursing home care if they were not in assisted living. From the sound of your question, your mother might not qualify if her state program has this requirement.
• Many programs pay for some personal care services provided by the assisted living facility, but not for room and board; others pay part of room and board costs.
• The amount the program pays may depend on the level of services needed. If your mother lives in a state with this rule, and she needs few services, the program won't pay much if anything for her.
• Some states cap monthly payments, regardless of how much care actually costs.
• In some states, only a small number of people are covered; in these states there's usually a waiting list.

To learn the details of Medicaid coverage -- often called the Medicaid home and community-based services (HBSC) waiver -- in your parents' state, contact the state's Medicaid office. To find the state's Medicaid Web site, go online to any search engine and enter "Medicaid" and the name of that state. Or, you can call the Eldercare Locator toll-free at 800-677-1116 and ask for contact information for the state's Medicaid office. The assisted living facility you are interested in may also have useful information for you about the extent of coverage and qualifying for it.

Best to you and your family in resolving this perplexing issue, Be very careful that your Mom's level of care is not compromised.


GOOD INFO! - Thanks from all of us on the website!
Ask this question to an Elder Care lawyer. Remember that Medicare is a federal program, while Medicaid is state-funded, with some federal assistance, program. There are numerical guidelines.
If your mother is fortunate enough to live in a State that participates in a Medicare Cash & Counseling Program this may also help your situation. For details go to:
She probably can. Here's the thing about Medicaid, as it was explained to me. Medicaid will use all your mother's assets to pay for the services she uses, and when all her money is gone, the program continues to provide service at taxpayer expense. But if you were expecting an inheritance, it will all have been liquidated and spent on her care. I'm not an attorney, so you might want to talk to one for ironclad information.
Is there any way that you can use her S.S. money and/or pension money to pay for her stay in an Assisted Living facility? Isn't this better than the depletion of her assets and therefore YOUR inheritance? Just asking. If I were old and needing food, and shelter, I would NEVER deplete my assets. Life is too short.

Share your answer

Please enter your Answer

Ask a Question

Reach thousands of elder care experts and family caregivers
Get answers in 10 minutes or less
Receive personalized caregiving advice and support