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Mom has lived with us for a few years but since she has to use a wheelchair the situation is not as good as it was. Her independence is gone and she needs help with daily living.She is lonely and needs a more structured lifestyle than we have at this time. We have talked about assisted living. Any suggestions as she has only SS and a small VA check.Will Medicaide help pay for it.? Any suggestions or advice would be appreciated.

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To update my answer from 2014. I found another private assisted living home for my mother in a residential place. They only had 4 people at the most while my mother was there. We loved the new place that we moved mon to. Home cooked meals like I would serve at my house, laundry, help with bathing, complete medicine management, activity person came in for game day, music people visited, visiting pets, cookouts, and very kind caring caregivers. In the end I brought my mother back to this assisted living home for hospice care after a serious blood diagnosis. She only lived 2 days longer, but at least she was in familiar surroundings with care givers who cried with me the morning that she died. I would recommend a home like this to everyone.
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We are very lucky mom and dad bought long term care my father passed before he used it but mom has been receiving large checks for over 3 years which cover everything and then some. Be very careful when picking out an assisted living if your loved one has any form of dementia you may want to consider memory care instead. Mom was at a Brookdale facility and asked to leave after 2 years because she would try to walk and fell even though they were getting close to 6000 a month for special care they didn't have the staff to watch her. It was a little hard on her and me but now she doesn't remember any of this. Remember the saleperson will let you what you want to hear I was told she could stay till she passes unless she needed something intravenous, wrong . One thing you should understand is that there is a facility fee of 2500-3000 to pay before you even move so it can get expensive moving around . Mom is in memory care now which is much more homey than a nursing home and the cottage are 12-14 people so the care is much better than a it was at Brookdale with a 25-1 ratio now its max 7-1. I feel good going there and seeing her happy .I was told we were very lucky to have to long term care most people don't since it's not a cheap insurance policy. Most places I called are private pay and told me straight up so we were not wasting each others time. If the need arrives check with your love ones doctor to see if he or she has any suggestions on help from Medicare or other options
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We are having to move my mother to a different assisted place since her level of care has changed to a higher level. There are places that are referred to as "aging in place" meaning that the person can stay there for the duration of their life. Some places provide hospice if and when that time comes. Some places take Medicaid waivers so the cost is lower and if you have VA help also they may keep your mother long term. One of the places I am going to visit this week told me that they have never asked a person to be moved out because they didn't pay or could not pay for the higher level of care. They said that they did not want to see one of their residents moved to a nursing home because of finances. I guess time will tell.
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Back to the original, practical question - yes, we used assisted living locators, and they gave us leads, one of which was pretty good, but I ended up finding better ones by driving and walking around the neighborhood and checking places out.
When you check stuff out online and ask for info or brochures, you tend to run into the ones who are paying more to advertise themselves, which may leave some better options out of the picture, though they may be some very good places you may want to consider. The locators may pick places that give them finder's fees of a sort, but will understand financial constraints as well. And they should ask right off the bat about the veteran status, because that makes a difference. It would not hurt to contact one and see what they suggest.
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Debralee, it sucks, but if she can't live in her own home on her own terms, which was what my mother wanted too, you are up against reality. With my mom, if she hadn't thrown out the three different home health people we had to come interview with her when she was in assisted living, maybe it would have been possible, though frankly pretty dangerous, even with a good neighbor and a LifeLine. If I had abandoned my family members who needed to stay in Arkansas, my job/career/colleague, and probably what was left of my sanity, I MIGHT have been able to move in with her and keep her home, but only with using lift equipment and a lot of modifications that she would have refused. She kept hoping she would walk again and that would let her go home all by herself. Neither was realistic, esepcially since she did not work very hard in physical therapy and she had additional strokes and MIs...and I felt guilty too. The guilt is normal, however irrational it may be. Take a minute, breathe, pray, if there is way to do what your mom prefers, great, do anything you can do to get there, but really, there may not be. It is always ill advised to try to do the impossible. Impossible things include being a sole caregiver to a demanding person and multiply interrupted sleep every night, lifting more than your capacity to lift multiple times daily with or without equipment, and providing a hospital level of care without help (remember, nurses do it in SHIFTS, not 24 x 7.) You say the Serenity Prayer over and over again, stay involved and maybe see if you can do some outings with her, or bring her visitors and treats when you can, and give her the best quaity of life possible in the best setting possible, key word = possible. Don't worry about her accepting anything. Maybe she can't, and maybe her quality of life will be just as good if she keeps thinking and hoping she will go home again and it is all just temporary; that's OK too.
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Please tell me how in the world do you get over the emotional guilt of placing your own mother in a different environment when all she wants is to live in her own home until she dies even though that is not possible. All the familiarity and enthusiasm in the world will not change her desire to be in her own home! I cannot blame her, I would not want to be forced into unfamiliar surroundings against my will. Yes she will be well cared for, but those words will not justify her wishes or the the guilt of the adult child. Some elderly thrive in assisted living, not my mother. When she cannot accept her own diminished capacity, what do I do as her adult daughter with my own elderly years approaching do?
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Will do Jimmy! Keep in mind, parent is resistent to this change and always prefer to be with you or in their current setting, but they DO adjust and it can be a wonderful experience if they open their hearts and minds to new friends and activities. I'm sure you will continue to support and visit. It will give you and family the "breather" you need to now spend quality time together vs. day to day caregiving. Give it some time, and by all means visit some places ahead of time at different times to see if it seems like a good fit for your loved one. Realize there is an adjustment period (weeks to a couple months). Decorate her room with her favorites where possible -- pictures, paintings, rug, favorite chair, favorite pillows, bedding, throws, favorite lamp, etc. to make it seem more like home. Bring carryout treats for dinner or lunch, bring some homecooked meals with you on occassion if you can and all have dinner together in the dining area. If she's on the first floor, consider having a birdfeeder outside her window, etc. Be as positive and enthusiastic as you can and reassure her. Be sure to invite some new friends she might meet as other residents over to join you when you visit, bring coffee, tea, candies and make a little get together out of it.
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Please say a prayer for us. We are starting the for Mama to try out assisted living . We are seeing her Dr tomorrow to go over the paperwork.Hard decision,
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If Special Assistance from Medicaid is approved will the Aid and Attendance benefit
stop? The way is was explained to me by Kathy from Social Services the Special Assistance is a program different from reg Medicaid and the funds come from a different source.She didnot think it would stop.Thanks
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A true Assisted Living facility usually is only a private pay situation for room and board (medical care, meds etc that would normally be covered by insurance will still cover as if he were living at home - it is considered living in an apartment rather than a nursing home).

We had my FIL in one for 2 years until his health got really bad and a true long care nursing home was needed.

WE currently have him in a long care facility that also has part of it as Assisted Living, part is a rehab care area, and part is respite care facility. So a little of everything. It also takes Medicaid when the money runs out but if they are in Assisted Living they would have to move to the Long term care area.

It actually is a great facility and doesn't feel like a nursing home for the most part. It has more the feeling of an elderly dorm with activities, social gatherings etc. You just have to spend some time really looking and making sure they have what you really want. Check your state web site for nursing home ratings. I went to look at any care facility with a 4 stars or better out of 5 stars and my first questions was do they accept Medicaid payments if not then we didn't even look. We are still private pay right now but eventually the funds will run out and we will need Medicaid. So we didn't want to have to do this more than once.
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The Aid and Attendance for in home help is different from the Aid and Attendance for a community. Many communities will help with the Aid and Attendance paperwork.
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Thanks she already gets a small aid and attdance check so I would think it could be increased. I an waiting for information from some local places before we get started.
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VA Aid and Attendance will help the widow of a vet by up to $1113 per month. The VA requires her MD to fill out paperwork showing the necessity for care. You can start with him about what type of placement is appropriate. Medicaid may also kick in part of the cost. Take her for tours of several places, the better ones will help sort out the financial end too.
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