How can my Mom qualify for Hospice?

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I've been caring for my mother in her home for 10 years. I used to live next door, but moved into the house about 4 years ago when my mother couldn't be alone anymore. Her Alzheimers/Dementia is getting much worse. I am disabled myself and have a 10 year old son. We put the house in my name and my mothers name (jointly) about three years ago. Then, when I spoke with an elder care attorney a year ago, she had me put it in just my name. She told me that I "shouldn't have a problem keeping the home" when my mother passed away. I am still afraid that the home could be taken away from me, and if that happens, I would have no way of taking care of myself and my son on my low income. We would be homeless. Even though I'm having a very hard time caring for my mother now because my health is getting much worse, I'm afraid to apply for Medicaid for her because of the possibility of losing the house. What I'm wondering is, how and when can my mother qualify for Hospice? I've heard that Medicare will pay 100% for Hospice, so that is something I could do without fear of losing my home. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

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Alzheimer's is a terminal disease but it goes on for years. If a doctor determines that your mother has six months or left to live, then she would qualify for hospice. As the others said, hospice isn't for financial relief. It's for the terminally ill.

I have seen people get better on hospice and go off of the care for a time. I've seen people live many months on hospice and have a good quality of life without the pain that they've been enduring. However, no one qualifies until it looks, medically, like they are entering the end of life. Talk with her doctor and see what he or she says.

Good luck,
Carol
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I think that you are worrying needlessly about losing the home. Yes, states do try to recover some of their costs by taking the proceeds of the sale of the house after the recipients death. But there are exceptions written into federal law. One is for family members who have lived in the house and kept their loved one out of a nursing home for two years or more. Another is for "hardship" situations. Making you homeless is hardly in the state's interest.

Please consult an attorney specializing in Elder Law, who will be very familiar with Medicaid requirements and can assure you and guide you in the application process.

Hospice is a wonderful program, when your mother is ready for it. In the meanwhile, Medicaid will be a great relief to you both.
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RSTORMFIELD sorry that you had such a bad experience an you lost your love one but Hospice can be in the home, my Dad is on hospice presently at home with me. I get assistance with his daily bath an feeding of breakfast, weekly visit by a nurse, an a monthly visit from the doctor. His pain is well controlled. I am so very thankful for hospice they have been a great help.
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first when my quick clam her house , u need to own it for at least 5 yrs or the state will take the house when is put into a nursing home if u can't continue taking care of her. thats one thing u must consider
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As a clinician and adult child caregiver for my mom who was appropriately placed on hospice, hospice is a very valuable program and can be a great support to families and those on hospice themselves. It sounds as if you personally need assistance for your financial needs. I would suggest consulting an elder care attorney who can assist you with applying for Medicaid in your state, explain any spend down and asset management questions you have. You did not state whether your loved one was suffering with a chronic illness and is considered end stage, meaning there are no further curative measures being put in place for your loved one. That is the biggest qualifying factor. Hospice although provides some financial relief to families and patients due to what is covered by Medicare, I can assure you hospice is not going to be an option just to help you financially if your lovedone does not qualify clinically. Medicare has a strong eye on hospice and other services and they are becoming very strict as to what is considered appropriate for hospice and what is inappropriate. I wish you all the best.
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Please ignore RSTORMFIELD, that is an extreme unusual example. My Mom with dementia and a stroke was cared for In a NH for 4 years by a loving, caring staff (not all staff was great but the majority were). Hospice generally requires a terminal diagnosis with death expected within months or maybe a year. Hospice is wonderful and they work with your whole family. MEDICAID is complicated, there is a look back which I believe has increased to 7 years. Consult an attorney or your local social services agency, or maybe your Department of Aging. There are resources if you look hard enough. We went through MEDICAID with my mother. It wasn't easy. Best wishes, it is a long road. Don't be afraid to ask for help!
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It's my understanding the 'state' won't put a lien on a home if you moved in to care for mom or have a disability. It's a legal question, if the attorney stated you would be ok, then I would think he/she knows what they are talking about. You can do some research online. Most states have a 5 year look back, but some states may differ on the number of years. Call the Area Agency on Aging for in home programs that can assist you in caring for mom. You can also check into an adult medical day care to see if she qualifies.
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My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. As time went and the disease spread she was referred to hospice at a local hospital. At this time i caregive for my 77 year old father with parkinsons and chf. We are keeping him out of nursing homes because he wants to stay home and yes there is a fear of abuse. Being proactive is your best bet there. Mom wanted hopital hospice as opposed to being home - she didn't want us to remember her dying in the house. I must say that the hospice nurses were the BEST. It takes a special person to do this job and i admire everyone of them. They made her remaining days on this world very comfortable for all of us. But yes you have to wait till they have six months or less. My mom passed within a week of being admitted and it certainly was NOT hospitals fault..it was her time. Don't let anyone make you think doing this will kill off your loved one faster. It's not true. But you must do your homework on where they go. Not every place is great..we see it on the news often but like i said you must be proactive to make sure everythings being met. There are options to get help at home etc. Until that time. Hang in there..try a recommended caregiver (And still be proactive, best way to catch bad care before it's too late). Talk to a lawyer about the house and put your mind at ease. It will be ok. Hugs!
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TnMtnMama, Hospice is only for terminal patients with less than 6 months to live (per the MD). Plus, they will require someone be there with her at all times. Hospice will not cover the cost of a Nursing Home; you pay for that. As for Medicaid: she will not be eligible because she gave away large assets, namely the house.
Go back to that attorney for an explanation of how you keep the house.
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Go to your mothers doctor, ask the doctor if mom might need Hospice. The doctor has to call hospice in, hospice talks to you and mom, determines if you qualify or not. They will review the situation every 3 months, to see if they continue or not. At least that's how it was for my husband. Change of eating habits, loss of weight were a couple things. And yes, an illness that will end in death.... but that doesn't mean the patient is going to die tomorrow or next week or next month. Hospice is much more than that. Again, talk to your moms doctor. Then go from there.
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