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My father is suffering from congestive heart failure, prostate cancer, osteoarthritis of the hips (he's in a wheelchair), and suffers from incontinence due to kidney failure.He is 88 years old. My mother who is 87 yrs. old is finding it hard to care for him. They own a home and Dad receives a small pension and social security. What do we need to do to get him into a nursing facility and will they take his pension and social security if they cannot afford to pay?

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My understanding is that your mother will get a small amount of money, but will lose her home. I could be wrong, but better check it out. Medicaid is ruthless.
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There are 2 types of acceptance to a nursing home: medical and financially. You need to have both in place. The first thing you should do is find a home you like and feel comfortable with. They are not all the same. Call 5-6 in your area and ask for a tour. Afterward, you will sit down with the admissions person and ask them about their requirements and application process. These can vary from home to home. For example, some homes don't take anyone under 65. Others are not set up with a locked unit for dementia patients who walk, another might only accept patients who need a lot of physical care. The admissions person will discuss that with you. While you're there, pay attention to the feel of the place. How are people being treated? Does the staff seem caring and engaged or distant and bored? How does it smell? How many activities are offered a day? Etc.

The other acceptance is financial. Medicare will cover something like 200 days of "rehab" if he qualifies. Otherwise, it's Medicaid, private pay, or long term care insurance if he's going to be there long term. Again, ask the admissions person what firms of payment they accept. You should also, as soon as possible, make an appointment to consult with an Elder Care attorney to see if Medicaid would be a possibility. Good luck.
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Go on caremanager.org . Click on the icon to find a care manager and then enter your zip code. A care manager will come to your home for a fee and then provide you with a list of up to 3 facilities that are best suited for your father based on his physical, psycho-social, and financial capabilities. Although you pay an assessment fee to the care manager their experience will significantly limit the amount of leg work and research your mom or you will be required to do. In addition they will prevent you from making a mistake and sending your father to a facility that does not provide quality care. a word of caution, all care managers do not provide an ethical service like the one's certified by ALCA or found on caremanager.org . There are individuals affiliated with franchises such as Care Patrol, etc that say they are a FREE service when in reality they receive a commission from Nursing Homes to place people there. Usually these are the nursing homes where you do not want your loved one to be in. It may cost you up to $ 200.00 but you will get an unbiased referral to a facility that provides quality care and a care manager that will advocate for your father even after he is placed in the facility.
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Also, under Hospice I think Medicare pays for it. Your Dad maybe a canidate for Medicaid.
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An AL is not equipped to take care of your father. Make an appointment with his doctor. He may be able to help place him. He needs to be in a longterm care facility under Hospice. From your post, it sounds like ur Dad will not be with you much longer. Hospice will make sure he is comfortable and pain free. At this point, I would not consider home Hospice. The Nurses are not there fulltime and neither r the aides. Your Mom would still have some of the caregving. By having him in longterm care, you and Mom can visit and enjoy the time he has left. You can go home knowing he is being cared for and Mom can get the rest she needs and time to recuperate.
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In the United States, each region has a federally funded program called Area Agency on Aging. Call them and they will send someone to the home to do an assessment and help you choose the best way to care for your parents. Since they do not seem to developing dementia, get the information you need and have a conversation with them. It my be possible for both of them to move to an assisted living apartment, where services are rendered as needed and they can remain together.
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Depending on the situation, you may want to first check into having in-home healthcare aides come in to help. I'm not sure in your situation whether or not a nursing home is really right when more people are wanting to stay in their homes longer and even die at home with dignity. In the home healthcare is a far better alternative for some situations but not all so choose wisely
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I would check into an adult family home for dad. What state does he live in? We have my mom living in one since last fall. They are reasonable in price usually around 3000.00 so moms money will last her longer. If u would like help finding out more about this type of home pm me and I will be happy to share what I know. They are a wonderful alternative for people who have some resources but dont want to see 8000 + a month sucked out of their savings. At 87 your mom needs a break. I wish you all the best.
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I had the same situation where my father was hospitalized and my mother could definitely not care for him. He could not walk, was incontinent, and had dementia. The hospital wanted to discharge him and send him home, but we knew he needed AL. As advised by a friend, we told the hospital we would absolutely not be picking him up and bringing him home. Because we refused to take him, the hospital (and doctor) then determined he needed care and assisted with placement. He had long term care insurance, but to unlock the benefits we needed to prove need. Hospitals do not always consider home life, or that an 85 year old cannot provide or afford 24/7 caregiving. Dad did not really want to go to AL, but it helped Mom, and it was her decision.
The other answers contain great advice in performing the actual placement process.
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I also recommend you see an elder attorney. And, if your father served in a war, such as WW II, he may also be eligible for a VA benefit or monthly assistance payment for In-Home Care.
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In addition to the wise answers above, you should check with his doctor; that is who has to certify that your father is in need of skilled nursing care.
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They need to see a Elder Law attorney to make sure they have all of their legal papers in place. They are also experts in Medicare and Medicaid.
Don
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This question has medical and legal implications. From a medical standpoint it need to be determined the level of care that is needed. If he has a skilled need it is helpful for him to be hospitalized with an illness and they will be responsible to help you find placement and work out payments. From the hospital a discharge planner will work you through the process. If he has not been hospitalized and does not require skilled care, assisted living or personal care is likely the level of care he will need. I recommend calling your local area in aging. They are part of the country. Someone will probably come to assess him for public programs. If he is not eligible for public programs you could contact an elder law attorney in your area and get directions on preparing for spend down. They will assist your mom in maintaining her home and finances and help you get the financial areas worked out. Talking with his doctor will also help.
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Your mother is entitled to a "community spouse allowance" to pay her bills. The rest goes to the Nursing Home. Visit a nursing home and ask them to explain how the financial ends meet.
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