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My mother is 94 and very weak. I need help and can't afford to pay for it out of the VA aid and attendance pension. I am the one and only child of a 94 year old and I am 68. It is hard to do it all. I need help and someone said I could get my Mom's doctor to order hospice to help me. Any one familiar with this. I will contact VA and get it in writing for sure, but that will take forever. I want to know before I have to pay it all back. Scary to make changes. I don't want to stick my neck out and be sorry for it.

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If you need Aid and Attendance help, there is a Non-profit who helps you through the paperwork and it is all free. They ask for a donations after they have helped you to "pay-it-forward" as their organizations relies on donations, but they are pretty great and have helped thousands. Find them at www.apscnp.org
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Great question, Lanie53. We recommend calling the Disabled American Veterans, American Legion, VFW, etc, and asking that question directly.

Off the cuff, the answer would probably be "yes" but you should check that out before you act. In fact, practically all of his income would go to whatever home in most cases, although we're not as familiar with federal VA nursing homes.

There may be a difference if your husband goes into a federal VA home at a VA Medical Center over going into a state-run veterans facility. He's eligible for both with a 100% rating. In our state, veterans keep around $100 if they are in a state-run veterans home rather than the $35 at a regular nursing home.
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My husband is 100% disabled veteran . I get aid and attendance to take care of him at home. He is terminal with Alzheimer's and renal cancer. My question is: if I put him I'm a VA center will we lose all of the aide and attendance benefit?
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I saw someone posted that you no longer have to have a prognosis of 6 months, that is not true. The doctor has to say that if the disease runs its normal course there is a prognosis of 6 months or less. As far as Aid and Attendance in Michigan we have agencies that will assist you for free
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Dear College, I asked the agency I used to successfully help me get A & A for my Dad. The answer is that, getting Hospice will not affect your continuing to get the Aid and Attendance money. Receiving Medicaid would, however, because Medicaid would then be paying what A & A was paying. With Hospice, as long as your Mom's income does not increase beyond the limits of what VA requires for her to receive A & A, it shouldn't affect her monthly pension. Hope this helps.
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college...if you call the agency for aging, they can give you the local number for hospice in your area....medicare WILL help you, but your mom sounds EXACTUALLY like mine, with her assorted problems... and needs the hospice people more... if you can't find the info you need ,call this sites aging care. com and they can help you...
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one agency is called veteran's aid ..
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that's true... all u.s.a. has hospice for elderly care now... you don't have to be in last 6 months of your life...I too will post the free agency that helped me ...
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Hi College,

So glad your mommy will still have the Aid and Attendance even with Hospice. I pray they will give you some relief. My Dad was on Aid and Attendance and I had just arranged for 6 hours a week homecare also from VA when he fell and went to hospital and died a week later. Make sure you check on all the VA possibilities for help plus Hospice. Sounds like you and your Mommy need it. Hang in there and know we are thinking of you and you will get through this. Your Mommy is so lucky to have you.
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In regards to Too young for this (and I don't know where you are, I'm in Texas): Hospice re-evaluates patients every 6 mos. is what I was told. Plus, someone can be put on hospice for 3 mos. start to do better and released from hospice.1 month later if the patient starts to go downhill again, hospice can be reinstated. My mom was "not thriving" so hospice was called in. That was 1 1/2 years ago. She is fairly stable now however things keep happening (3 seizures for no reason as example) to keep hospice with her. She is getting ready to be re-evaluated to see if she is released to under facility care. I too am an only. Wasn't until 2 years ago when my sister passed but even with her here she wasn't able to help out. She worked full time plus taking care of her grandson. It's a double edged sword.....it can be a great help or boy I have 2 friends that have an awful lot of trouble with their siblings. We can only do what we can do and do the best we can. Take a deep breath and take one phone call at a time. :) God Bless
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I didn't have a clue about Hospice. I was informed by my Mother's healthcare company rep. They sent a rep to our house to evaluate Me, my Husband with Dementia and my Mother with age related health problems. The rep was a nurse practionioner and she is the one suggesting hospice to us for Mommy. I thought about it and then started asking questions. I am going to talk to Mommy's Primary Care Doctor at April visit. My Mother is blessed. GOD will work it out for us. My Mother makes too much money for any help from the Aging Care Agencys. She makes just enough over the limit to fall thru the cracks with the government help.
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Whoa, Marylouise, the agencies almost all accept Medicare BUT Medicare has pretty strict rules on what they will and will not pay for. You might get an aide once a week for bathing and only after getting out of the hospital. It's strictly a temporary coverage.
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She has dementia and doesn't remember much anymore. She can't walk or stand. She is very weak. She is in lots of pain from arthritis and curvature of her spine. Her hands are very weak. She can barely feed herself now. It hurts her back to sit up very long. She wants to stay in bed and sleep all the time. She is getting real picky with what she will eat. It's sad. The only thing she can do is try to wipe herself when she goes potty. I have to hold her up so she can wipe. This is a nightmare. I pray a lot.
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My Mother is on VA Aid & Attendence from my Father from WWII. I went thru an agency and spent $1100 back in 2013. After it was applied for I was on my own. I was blessed to get a congressman to help us. It took four months with his help. Mommy was 91 so they all were wonderful to her. I did talk to the VA local office yesterday and they said she could get the hospice thru Medicare and she would still have her VA Aid & Attendence. They will come just for a few hours at first. It is getting worse every day. She doesn't sleep at night and tries to get up. She sleeps in the day. I am worn out. I love her so much, just taking one day at a time. Hugs for all. You all help me so much. I love this site. Thanks again for always giving good info. Daddy passed on to Glory 36 years ago today March 13,1979, with a massive heart attack. He was 65 and had never been sick. It was a big shock to all of us.
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Interesting to learn in home health care agencies will accept Medicare. Good question, good answers.
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College, my heart goes out to you. I, too, am an only, and helped my elderly parents for an intense, all-consuming, past 5 years, until my Dad's death 3 months ago. Only children have an especially tough time, as it all falls to us. Hang in there; in the end you will find you are stronger than you thought.
I don't know if Aid and Attendance will stop if you get Hospice for your Mom. Who helped you with obtaining Aid and Attendance VA benefit? Can you ask them? I used a paid agency, after trying unsuccessfully for a year to do it on my own. Best $850 I ever spent. IF you used a service, they should know the answer. I will try and find out for you from the agency who helped me and will post the answer if/when I do. Be strong and get outside in nature if you can. Take care of yourself.
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My daughter works in rehab/longcare facility. A few years back hospice requirements have changed. You no longer have to be given 6 months to live.
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Hospice is very picky, at least where I live. The patient has to have been given 6 months or less to live to get hospice here.

How much does your mother get for Aid & Attendance? And what exactly do you need help with? I think that matters when it comes to qualifying for assistance in the home.

Have you tried to get home health aides through an agency? Agencies usually accept Medicare for home health aides. You may not get aides 24/7, but you would probably get some help.
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I think you got some good advice from the others. I am a veteran and get medical care at the VA. But so far I don't need hospice. I will be 83 the 17th and getting very forgetful. But the good Lord has been with me all my life and I am very thankful.
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You could call and ask the question in general without giving any information about your situation. Is your mother a veteran or using her husband's benefits?
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Dealing with the VA can be painful but in our experience, which has probably been more positive than others' experience, most VA employees want to help the veteran within the constraints they find themselves. We recommend calling the VA benefits hotline and investing an hour or so on hold. Another option is to go in person to your local Regional Office and speak with someone there. If you're relying on the VA's IRIS email inquiry system, we've found that takes upward of a month to get a response from the Regional Office.

Alternatively, IF your mom is receiving care via a VA Medical Center, you could call them BUT we recommend speaking with a social worker who deals with this on a day-to-day basis.
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As with porchpickles, my mom also recieves aid and hospice. My dad is a veteran and we applied for spouse benefits. She is in a facility and because of her decline a year and half ago she started with hospice every morning til noon and then the aides and the facility stepped in when she left. He still receives the benefits during this period. A social worker or Hospice company can walk you through all of the info. And yes, VA does take time but we were lucky and it only took 2 or 3 mos. to get and they retro act it meaning the mos. you were waiting to be accepted you will receive that when you get your first or second check. Hope that makes sense. I just reread it :)) God Bless
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hi..i got my moms doc. to order hospice, and the social worker with hospice helped me with the aid& attendance ....i understand hospice will pay for everything related to your mothers decline... make sure your doc says what's wrong with her, such as "cognitive decline , if the doc. just says "dementia", hospice will NOT take on your moms case... call the hospice people, they will guide you to the right info.... my mom gets both aid& attendance, and hospice.... good luck!
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A doctor can write an order for Hospice to assess the situation to determine if Hospice services are appropriate. Original Medicare covers Hospice services. You will need to understand the benefits and limitations of Hospice services, if your mother is appropriate. I don't know the answer to your question. Hospice is not listed as an exclusion. You don't say who the veteran is or who the aid & assistance is for. It sounds like the aid & assistance is for your father - you may need to adjust the status - the benefit can change based on needs of one vs a couple. Hope this is helpful.
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