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FIL long term care insurance is running out. presently living in AL. Doesn't want to pay $5000/month to live there.


Is open to living in group home.


Any good/bad experiences?


How do you find them?


He lives in the Myrtle Beach area in SC.


He can do all 5 daily living activities.


Probably needs helps with his meds.

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Most group homes provide the kit and kaboodle here in WI (room, board, medication dispensation {meds are paid for by the clients health insurance or prescription plan, like medicaid}, transportation, cleaning and cooking services, heavy supervision). But on the con side, They usually use almost all of your Social security check for room and board here. I have met those who worked and/or lived in GH's--Many of the clients here have to work part time jobs at goodwill or workshop type of places to have a little spending money in their pockets. (Most of the time they make piece rate pay, which isn't much for them to live on, like extras for clothes and occasional snacks)
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Mark, group homes do not typically provide transportation. This is something that you should have him be sure and check out before he makes a decision based on money.
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Does he drive? What about his doctor appointments? You may want to find out if potential places has a shuttle bus to his appointments.
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markevans999 Nov 22, 2019
he does not drive.
most AL and independent facilities will drive you to doctor's appointments twice a week.
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You say that he can do everything, just wants to be waited on. Let him figure it out for himself.

I don't think that you should be worrying about what he wants, tell him that he can let you know where he is going and when and you will help him move.

I don't jump through hoops for any able person.
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for him it's all about the money.
his out of pocket expenses for living there is around $500/month.
he constantly complains that he shouldn't have to pay anything to live there!
i have no idea how he got the John Hancock insurance to pay out.
he's very social, so i personally think a group home would be worse for him.
have a couple of leads for independent care facilities that are about $2500/month cheaper.
the only reason he's in AL is his insurance would not pay for independent care.
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Do group homes accept Medicaid? This may be a deciding factor.
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NeedHelpWithMom Nov 21, 2019
True! Very sensible answer. Huge deciding factor! This is the most important answer to consider.

I would think they wouldn’t accept Medicaid but who knows how they are set up.

Here in our area, only nursing homes accept Medicaid. Assisted living facilities don’t.
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The only group home I heard about in our area is run by former nurses.
I don’t think anyone can choose for him. This decision is highly personal to make.

So is money the only reason he is considering leaving or are there other reasons too?
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markevans999 Nov 21, 2019
yes, money is the only reason.
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The hardest thing for us was that my dad was high functioning and had a really difficult time with the really incapacitated residents, death was sitting to close for his comfort.

They don't have any activities, no transportation and not a lot of room to move around and exercise indoors.

Personalities were right there, so if there was any tiff between residents, everyone got involved, because they are living like a large family and most of the seniors I have met in these situations regress to spoiled, selfish little kid personality traits, so you can imagine 5 to 10 full grown 4 year olds with one or 2 people young enough to be their grandchildren in charge. It can be very interesting, could he deal with that environment?

On the plus side, you tend to know everyone else, you have the same caregivers for a majority of the time and it is a home setting vs. a institutional environment. They are more likely to accept pets and you are usually situated in a neighborhood, so going for walks is not near major thoroughfares.

I would encourage him to stay where he is if he has the money and has been contented. He obviously has more going on then a need for help to take meds on time, I would really look at what his needs are and what the future looks like. Dementia only gets more care intensive and change more difficult.

Be sure and check out any home facility for compliance with the rules and regulations, my dads got shut down for repeated violations and poor care of those that could not advocate for themselves.
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NeedHelpWithMom Nov 21, 2019
Yeah, when you show the possible reality of a situation like certain group homes, it really could become a miserable place, huh?

Of course, conflict could occur in a facility too but it is probably monitored more closely.
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I'm not familiar with SC policies. You might be able to find an agency to do the research for you as to what is available and do an assessment for him. Is it that he has the money, but, doesn't want to spend it or that he won't have the money after the LTI runs out? You might consult with an attorney about his predicament to get guidance. I would be curious as to how he had the LTI pay when he was able to do all his ADLs.

I have a friend who's aunt moved from a regular AL to a home with 6 residents. The cost of the small group home was a little less, but, the amenities were better and her aunt ended up loving it. She is immobile and in a wheelchair. Both rooms were nice, but, the group home is more homey and is quieter. Her aunt likes to read and watch tv and in this place, the living room serves as the activity room and it really is a living room inside an actual home and not a room inside a facility. It suits her, because she likes it quiet for her reading and sitting and looking outside. IT's set in a lovely serene area with little traffic. They do things during the day, but, I haven't heard her mention any outings, trips, etc. If your LO is still mobile and social, I would think that a larger facility would offer more in the way of activities, socials, parties, etc.

In NC, there are ALs located in rural areas that are significantly less expensive than in the major cities. NC also has a star rating system for long term care facilities that can be found online that provides each facility's deficiency reports, status, corrections, etc. You might check to see if SC offers that too, if you decide to check out various places, like group homes.

If this person is competent, I'd try to do what they want.
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I don't have any personal experience with group homes but I imagine like any small closed environment it is highly dependent on the dynamics of the people living and working there, the pool is much too small to absorb even one toxic personality. He sounds very high functioning, does he really need that level of support?
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markevans999 Nov 21, 2019
he does not have to live in AL.
the only reason he went there is because his LTI would only pay out if he was in an AL facility.
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If he is happy where he is and he has the resources to pay for it he should bite the bullet and stay there. He will not be comfortable in a new place. Change in residence is very hard on the elderly. They are set in their ways, familiar with current place, love the staff, etc. I would only make the move if there was no choice.
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