Where do we find out how to get financial help for assisted living?

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My son-in-laws mother (low income) is having a hard time taking care of herself and lives alone. Is there any financial assistance she could get that would allow her to move into a assisted living facility? She is in Southern California.

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I'd suggest you look to get her qualified for and needing skilled nursing care in a NH that takes Medicaid rather than going onto an AL Medicaid waiver waiting list. For my state - Louisiana - it's about a 2 yr list as waiver funding has been shifted to suppprting PACE type of day group programs rather than oodles more costly 1-on-1 AL placement.

Now doing the jump to hyperspace from living at home (or IL) to NH and bypassing the AL phase will require work. I did it for my mom, took about 5-6 mos of every 3-4 week visits to her gerontologist to establish the health history & fat medical chart to show "need". The visit mom had a 10% wight loss and bad H&H lab results, doc wrote orders for skilled care needed. Mom moved into NH a few weeks later & as "Medicaid pending". Otherwise you end up waiting for an incident to happen - like sorrynotsorry experienced - with a hospitalization and placement into a facility. I think it's like 80% of NH admits come from a hospitalization discharge to a NH for rehab and then it's determined they need to stay. Big plus is they have the fat medical chart to support the need for skilled nursing. But if they are still at home, they need to do whatever to get a chart done.
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Currently there is a nine month wait list in California. She has to be not just low income but have less than $2000. In assets. You can get on the medi cal website and find all the information you need on the assisted waiver program. It requires a lot of work on the part of the person applying. It was done for us by the nursing home my MIL and FIL are currently in. We were able to get the ball rolling ,so to speak, when father in law fell outside at 2:00 am and laid in the pouring rain because MIL with dementia didn't know what to do (9 months ago ). We then refused to pick him up from the hospital so social workers got involved and we finally got some notice after months of being ignored by APS and the police.
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Normally there isn't any financial help for Assisted Living, unless your State offers a waiver program, which would pay for just part of the monthly rent.

Otherwise the mother-in-law, depending on if she needs around the clock care, would be able to go into a nursing home using Medicaid [which is different from Medicare]. Have your son check with the State of California Medicaid office. I also believe California offers other at-home type care.
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